I love the spicy, pungent flavor and aroma of garlic; we use it in our kitchen almost every day. Recipes call for garlic in various forms—whole, sliced, minced, and sometimes even paste. That’s because the way you cut garlic determines its potency. Garlic’s characteristic flavor comes from a compound called allicin which is produced when the walls of garlic are broken down. The more you slice, chop, or crush garlic the more allicin is produced and the more pungent the garlic will be.
Recipes list which preparation to use, but if you want to increase or decrease the potency of garlic in a dish or you’re not following a recipe, it’s important to know how to harness the power of garlic to get the amount of flavor you’re looking for.