I’m trying to write a blog post and everything I try to write about just seems to keep leading from one thing to another and expanding ever-larger. What is short and simple? Garlic. A lesson I’ve gotten from garlic is that no matter how complicated and tangled things get, you can often then collapse it down to something simple. When people ask me my favorite herb I sometimes answer “garlic”. I’m not sure it’s true, really. I immediately think of others that I also love. It often makes people laugh, though. And I sure do use it a lot. If it’s not my favorite, it’s at least a simple answer. It’s easy to find anywhere in the world. Everyone’s heard of it. Simple.

Whenever I have a sniffle or a tickle in my throat and think “uh oh, what’s about to happen?” I take some garlic. I don’t even know how many times I’ve looked it up and read about all the different things it does to various bits of the immune system – stimulates the production of these cells and those enzymes and increases the activity of such-and-such. And everytime I eventually give up on unraveling all the details and just take some dang garlic. Keep it simple.

First I mash up a fresh clove and let it sit for at least ten minutes. Then I usually add it to a salad or some other food. If I need to be quick and efficient about it I just mix it with a spoonful of honey to get it down. I have made myself nauseous and even caused myself to vomit from taking too much raw garlic plain. Don’t do that. There’s a contraindication for everything.

It’s elegant in it’s simplicity as a culinary herb too, isn’t it? Just about any vegetable or grain or meat or bean or any savory food, really, can be seasoned with a little salt, a little butter or oil and some garlic. Done. Yum. Simple.

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