Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Sometimes the 'Real' Thing Is Better; Testers Say Garlic Easier to Use and Better for You Than Flavor Cubes

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Sometimes the 'Real' Thing Is Better; Testers Say Garlic Easier to Use and Better for You Than Flavor Cubes

Article excerpt

Byline: ANN J. KELLEY

For years, cooks have relied on chicken and beef bouillon cubes to enrich the flavor of soups, stews and sauces. Now, Knorr's herb and vegetable MiniCubes - with such flavors as onion, chipotle, parsley, garlic and cilantro - give the concept a new twist.

Members of the Times-Union Consumer Panel have been putting the Garlic MiniCubes to the test. All of them use fresh or jarred garlic in their cooking and at times, garlic powder or salt. Most thought the minicubes had a nice garlic flavor but a lot of sodium as well and found them hard to crumble.

"The minicubes are easy to use, after you break them down," said homemaker Janine Thiemann. "My husband was able to crush one with his fingers, but I had to use a spoon to grind it down."

She added three of the minicubes to homemade Texas chili and used two of the crushed cubes to season steak. "It added a nice garlic flavor to the both the chili and the steak, but I recommend using one cube for the meat. It packs a lot of punch."

Thiemann plans to stick with the more traditional forms of garlic, pointing out that the minicubes contain MSG. "They're not healthy. It's basically garlic powder with added sodium and other preservatives."

"I don't see the advantage of using this product," said business owner Scott Greenfield, who seasoned a piece of salmon with the minicube but found rubbing it on a piece of toasted bread almost impossible.

"It doesn't rub and doesn't crumble. It's as hard as a rock. I had to bang it with a hammer."

He said the seasoning gave the fish a pungent flavor at first, but it faded fast. "I wouldn't buy it again. If I wanted to use garlic, I'd just use garlic."

Sales representative Angie Tekin described the minicubes as a combination of garlic and salt. "Knorr is a good product, but I didn't like this," she said. "The flavor is way too salty."

She added one of the garlic cubes to mashed potatoes and used part of another to make garlic bread. …

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