Wednesday, 2 August 2017

How to make Perfectly Golden Fried Garlic

Freshly fried minced garlic is an essential staple in many Chinese households (or at least in my household) we can use it in so many ways.

It's the basic aromatics and base (sometimes together with shallots and ginger) for any Chinese cooking.

It's especially handy to have in our kitchen whenever we make fried or steamed fish and oyster vegetables. Or simply, we need it in all our stir-fry dishes or just about any cooked dish as a matter of fact.

So, making a fresh batch of fried garlic when I'm out is of great importance.  It saves me the time of chopping fresh garlic each time I cook.  But, more importantly, I need it to sprinkle over my instant noodles, fried rice, porridge, soups, sometimes even over plain rice, if I feel like it.

You may think making perfectly golden fried garlic is easy.....well, it's not! :P  It takes practice to get it perfect.  I had to try quite a few times to get it right.  So, let me share with you my tips on how to get it right.

With any fried garlic recipe, you start with chopped garlic....easy-peasy, right? ;)  Not quite...coz you need one that's not too fine and not too chunky.

#Tip 1 - The chopped garlic has to be just the right size...too fine and it'll burn very quickly...and too chunky, it'll not brown evenly.

I used to use an electric chopper to do the job but soon realised that my fried garlic tend to stick to the pan during the frying process.  This (I believe) is due to the fact that the resulting blitzed garlic tends to be mushy and wet thus making it sticky when fried.

#Tip 2 - Chop the garlic the traditional way for best hand!  Ok-lah, not quite by hand entirely (too much work) but by using a hand-operated gadget (like the one I have) that won't result in mushy chopped garlic.  But if you don't have a gadget you can rely on to do this, then chopping by hand the traditional way will be best way to go about it.

Just press the plunger and chop until you reach your desired size...the more you press the plunger, the finer the chop.  Since this chopper is small, I break up one whole bulb of garlic into two portions to chop to allow more room for the garlic to move about.

I always open up the see-through container at the bottom to check if the garlic has reached the desired size I want and because it's done manually, I'm in control of how fine I want my chopped garlic to be.  This contraption (I have to say) is one of my better buys in terms of kitchen tools.

Now that you've gotten your chopped garlic ready, it's time to fry up these babies.  This is also not as easy as it seems.  I failed a couple of times to get the right browning, so let me share with you my boo-boos in the hope you'll get it right the first time.

#Tip 3 - The oil mustn't be too hot (use just enough oil to cover the garlic), otherwise the garlic will burn instantly around the outer ring of your small pan before the rest gets browned.  It's better for the oil to be not hot enough than too hot.

#Tip 4 - Stir the chopped garlic continuously (and turn the heat to medium-low heat as soon as the garlic goes in).  This will ensure even browning as the garlic bits around the outer ring (where the temperature is the hottest) will brown faster than the rest...and you don't want that (aka uneven browning)!

#Tip 5 - Take the fried garlic off the heat the moment it starts to brown.  And not a moment later.....sooner rather than later!  This takes a bit of practice (by eyeballing it) to determine when exactly it's considered starting to brown.

That's because the garlic will continue to cook in the residual heat even after it has been dished up.  Leave it out to cool for the next 5 - 10 minutes and it'll turn into a perfect golden brown as it cools.  If you take it out only after it has achieved the desired browning, it'll be too late as it'll be too far browned when cooled (and that has happened to me before).

Of course, taking the fried garlic off the heat at the right moment isn't the easiest to judge.  So, my advice is to take it out sooner rather than later.  If you find that it's not browned enough (after it has cooled which I've also experienced before), you can still make it right by putting it back into the pan and heating it up again but you can't save it once it has gone too far browned.

Practice makes perfect...and soon you'll be able to judge exactly when is the right time to take it out. ^_~

Sometimes, the simplest thing to make look simple enough but turns out to be not so simple after all.  So I hope these little tips I've shared will help you achieve the much wanted perfectly golden fried garlic each and every time you make it! ^o^


  1. I'll happily eat garlic raw but I'll also eagerly eat 'em perfectly fried like yours! Now here's another thought - garlic banana homemade ice cream! :D

    1. If I ever make garlic banana ice cream, you'll be first in line to try! :D Yes, my spouse prefers to eat raw garlic (which is much healthier, of course) but I prefer crispy garlic :)

  2. I am a garlic fan and eat lots of them. Last weekend I ate too much garlic and my wife freaked out saying my B.O. smelt of garlic. Aiyoyo! I didn't know that my mouth and body stank.

    I like that chopper you used and wonder if I should buy one. I seldom cook but I love handy gadgets like this.

    1. Aiyoyo, you seldom cook but want to buy this gadget and let it collect dust in your kitchen cupboard? @_@ Hah, you can tell your lovely wifey that raw garlic has lots of health benefits...hehe! ;)

  3. I know, it is not easy to make fried garlic as I have failed many times! So I really appreciate your post and tips on how to get it right. The thing about chopping by hand (which I have been doing) is that some pieces are very small and some are bigger. I can't get them even and that's why they don't cook evenly. Well, I must try to chop better. Eh, that's a cool gadget. Maybe I should get one if there is any offer on Lazada :)

    Eh, that's the Daiso saucer you told me about hee..hee...

    1. I see you share my sentiment that making perfect golden garlic is not as easy as it seems. No worries, I failed in my first few tries too. Practice makes perfect...and (hopefully) with my tips, you'll get perfect ones the next time you make it :) Ah, perhaps I should share a post on how to chop garlic evenly...kekeke! ;D

      I can't remember if I bought this saucer from Daiso as I bought quite a few Japanese plates recently from both Parkson and Daiso...and I can't remember which ones bought from where! ;P

  4. I love the smell of fried garlic. I bet your kitchen has a mouth-watering aroma.

    1. You're right, I love the lingering smell of garlic that permeates my kitchen :)

  5. Fried garlic or onion definitely not as east task, I failed mine miserably ~>_<~

    1. Ooo, hopefully if you follow some of the tips I shared, the next time you make fried garlic, it'll be a resounding success? ^_~


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