Helen Rosner writes a witty post about becoming intrigued by a new garlic-peeling technique that moves at rapid-fire pace, and her attempt to master it.
I won't spoil the … ending. It's a short piece, go read it.
The video shows a pair of hands using the point of a knife to stab each clove from an intact head of garlic and pop it from its skin. There doesn't seem to have been any special soaking or pummelling first; just a strategic marriage of blade and pressure. The video is hypnotic: the garlic seems almost to want to be peeled, its cloves bursting outward in a jubilant, efficient cascade, like an Esther Williams diving sequence. I watched the twenty-five-second sequence on repeat, enraptured by the soothing, steady rhythm of the stab and twist and pull. The appeal is akin to the pleasure some people find in watching videos of bubble wrap being popped, bubble-tea pearls bursting, or the crust on a crème brûlée being shattered—a rat-a-tat of tension and resolution that, for the viewer, fires off delicious little microsurges of dopamine.
The technique itself:
(CC-2.0-licensed photo of garlic courtesy the Flickr stream of JMacPherson)