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I definitely prefer using fresh garlic. I really like to get the whole garlic heads and then use the cloves as I need them. Garlic keeps well at room temperature. I find that as you take off each clove, the best way to peel it is to smash it! On a sturdy and secure (I’ll address that in a minute) cutting board you can smash the garlic clove with the side of a large chef knife or a small skillet. This makes the papery skin on the outside of the garlic break apart, making it easy to peel. To secure a cutting board, place a damp towel underneath it, which will prevent the cutting board from moving around on the counter. Also, some cutting boards have non-skid edges and do not need to be secured. I hope this helps!