This Classic Garlic Keeper Is the One Thing I Made Sure I Brought Back from Spain

published 2 days ago
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A woman cuts garlic with a knife close-up. Cutting garlic for salad or as an aromatic spice for meat.
Credit: SERSOLL/Shutterstock

I don’t get out to Spain often, but when I do, I always make sure to come home with something special for my kitchen. One of my favorite instances of this happened back in 2019. Growing up in a Spanish family, many of my memories revolve around two things: the music of Julio Iglesias and delicious food. My family hails from the northern region of Galicia where the dishes range from hearty dishes like caldo Gallego and asado de ternera to seafood-laden tapa plates like pulpo a feira and chipirones a la plancha (my favorite), all featuring one major thing in common: garlic.   

While each family varies, in my home, you’ll rarely find us cooking without garlic. While visiting friends and relatives in Galicia, I began to notice that this is not only a common theme among most Spaniards, but we even store garlic the same. How? In a specially decorated garlic jar, specifically an El Puente del Arzobispo Garlic Jar

What is the El Puente del Arzobispo Garlic Jar?

Like many other Mediterranean countries, Spain is famous for its hand-painted ceramics. The heart of this tradition lies in the province of Toledo, specifically in the village of, you guessed it, El Puente del Arzobispo, where artisans have been creating these handmade essentials for hundreds of years. Beloved across the country, it’s rare to walk into a Spaniard’s home and not find a piece of this dishware in their kitchen, especially the garlic jar. 

Covered in a traditional blue, white, and floral motif (as well as the word ajos aka garlic in Spanish), this clay jar not only makes a lovely addition to any countertop, but is also smartly made. Holding up to four heads of garlic, its ventilation holes help keep your garlic fresh while the lidded top keeps your garlic in the dark, discouraging sprouting and allowing your garlic to last twice as long. Best of all, because every jar is hand-painted, the designs and colors will slightly vary, meaning each one is unique, for a personalized feel no matter where you buy it. 

Credit: Sarah Vazquez

Why I Love the El Puente del Arzobispo Garlic Jar

Growing up, I always saw these jars in my loved ones’ homes, so picking one up from the source was a must for me the last time I made it to the Iberian Peninsula. I went to a local tienda determined to find one, and as I walked in, I was greeted by a lovely shop owner excited to help me continue this tradition. As I picked it up, I admittedly became a little teary-eyed as I thought of the generations of people who used these very same jars before me — it’s truly an honor to be able to carry on traditions. 

Once I returned to the States, I carefully unwrapped the jar, placed it on my counter, and took a step back to admire it. Something about it just made my home feel more homey and I couldn’t help but smile. Now each time I start a meal, I’m able to reach into the same jar generations of women have before me. Not to mention, I have yet to find that my garlic has gone bad or sprouted since. I call that the ultimate win. 

Not heading to Spain anytime soon? No problem! You can get your hands on an El Puente del Arzobispo Garlic Jar from the comfort of your own home for just $35. So whether you’re a fan of garlic, Spanish food, or Mediterranean decor, this is a piece I’m confident you’ll find a welcome addition to your kitchen. My advice? Pull up your favorite Spanish recipe, pop on some Julio Iglesias, and get to mincing — you’ll be transported to Spain in no time. 

Buy: El Puente del Arzobispo Garlic Jar, $34.95