I am admittedly obsessed with garlic. I usually double or triple the recommended amount in cooking recipes and I also love to eat it raw (in salads, with poached eggs, or even juiced!). I have no reservations about smelling like garlic; my close friends can attest to this…
Garlic is also extremely healthy! It has a ton of antioxidants, vitamins, enzymes, and minerals. Specifically, it contains many polysulfides (constituents that contain sulfer), which have been shown to increase cardiovascular health, reduce risk of cancers, as well as promote healthy skin. It is a very detoxifying food as well as anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory!
Whenever I prepare food with garlic, whether cooking it or eating it raw, I always crush and mince the garlic and let it rest for a few minutes before. This is because some of the healthy polysulfides in garlic become available only after crushing the cloves. If introduced to heat or acid too soon, these healthy constituents will be lost, but letting the garlic rest for a few minutes allows the polysulfides to develop and remain intact through food preparation.
Garlic is different from other crops in that it gets planted in the fall. This past fall I planted 3 rows of garlic cloves (yes, its true, you just stick some cloves in the ground a couple inches down!) and I am happy to see that they are already coming up! In early summer I will be able to harvest the garlic scapes, then late summer I will dig up the garlic bulbs!