Thursday, March 4, 2010

garlic... ZOOM!

I have the best gadget ever.

It's called a Garlic Zoom. I originally got one for my dad for Christmas. I didn't really mean to; I was in the kitchen store looking for something and I heard someone say "What's a Garlic Zoom?" and it was like one of those cartoons where Garfield hears Jon take lasagne* out of the oven and is immediately standing next to him. I was immediately looking over this random stranger's shoulder to find out what they were talking about, just because the name was awesome. (The word 'zoom' excites me way too much if you take into consideration that I'm technically an adult.) They were probably pretty freaked out, but that's how it went. I bought it purely because of the novelty--it seemed like a funny thing to get someone who loves garlic (and I get my love of garlic from my dad).

So basically this thing is a ball with wheels that you put garlic inside and it minces it for you. Probably not all that useful if you don't use a lot of garlic, prefer crushed garlic, or like your garlic chopped in larger chunks instead of finely minced; but I use at least three cloves per meal and want it thoroughly integrated into my food.

So, okay, you lift the little door on the top up and put in a few cloves of garlic, then close it.

Wheel it around for a little while. It seems to stick at first--the blades need some pushing to get into the garlic (they are awfully small)--but once you push a bit you just wheel the thing around for literally about 10 seconds.

And then you have finely minced garlic! Now, I feel bad, because the one I bought for my dad in the store was a normal GarlicZoom, but when I went to buy my own online I discovered the GarlicZoomXL. So the normal one can probably fit two or three cloves of garlic max, but the XL could probably fit around 6 if I really tried.

The reviews on the websites I found made me a little reluctant to buy the thing--some people loved it, some said it was really useless and they lost as much garlic as they got. I find that I only lose as much garlic as would get stuck to the knife (or cutting board) to the point that I don't bother trying to scrape it off. (The bottom of the GarlicZoom has little ridges for the blades to go through. It seems to expedite the garlic-cutting process, but it can be pretty hard to get the tiny pieces out of there afterwards.) Someone else said that it was stupid that you could only roll it one way since the blades were one-sided. The blades are definitely two-sided, so that person's clearly just an idiot. People said it didn't roll at all, but I think they were just unwilling to put the tiny amount of effort that it takes to push the thing through the garlic at first.

So, if you love garlic, go buy a GarlicZoom, and if you REALLY love garlic, buy a GarlicZoomXL. If you buy it from Williams-Sonoma (which I didn't because someone else had cheaper shipping) it comes with a little spatula that would probably be really helpful in getting the tiny amount of garlic that gets stuck out (if I'd known that the XL didn't automatically come with one of those, I would have paid the extra 20 cents for shipping). If you have kids, you can make them chop your garlic for you without worrying that they'll cut their fingers off. (Also, Williams-Sonoma claims it's exclusive, but since I got one in a store and the other from Kitchen Kapers I sincerely doubt their claim.)

*Did you know that all pastas end in "e" in Italian? (The -a ending is feminine singular, but nobody ever eats just one noodle, so they use the plural which is -e.) So basically we've screwed it up horribly. It's actually paste, but in our efforts to keep kindergarteners from from eating Elmer's Glue, we nixed the 'e' and replaced it with an 'a.' (Note: the ones that end in 'i' are okay. They are masculine. Sorry for any confusion.)


  1. That is cool. I wonder if they ship to Australia? Thanks for the comment on my blog btw!

  2. I have a pampered chef garlic slicer that I LOVE. It allows me to make adorable little garlic flowers to adorn steaks :) the garlic peeler they sell, however, is overrated.