Monday, November 4, 2013

Roasted Garlic

This is the best thing I've had in ages.  I also wrote this post in October and post-dated it.

How did I forget about roasting garlic?  It's so easy, and imparts massive flavor to anything.  Cooking the bulb caramelizes it and mellows the flavor.  You get all the garlic flavor without bad breath.  I mashed it and sprinkled it over pasta with just some olive oil.  You could toss it in salads, mash it in with potatoes, or use it as a condiment on steak.  The possibilities are endless, including putting it on buttered toast as an appetizer.

The site I got the method from had you peeling the head and cutting off the tops of the garlic cloves, which is harder than it sounds without a really sharp knife.  After doing all of that, I remembered that the really easy way to make this is to cut off the root end, but I didn't feel like going back to the store for more garlic, so don't go entirely by the photo.

Garlic heads
olive oil

1.  Preheat oven to 400º.  With the skins on the head, slice off the root end of the garlic to expose the cloves.  Lightly brush off any loose skins, but don't go deep enough that the cloves separate.

2.  Drizzle a small amount of olive oil onto your hand and rub it into the exposed surfaces of the garlic. It's ok if it gets on the outer skin, too.

3.  Wrap the head tightly in foil so it can self-steam as it cooks.  Place directly on the oven rack if the head is large enough, or place smaller ones in a muffin tin first.  Cook for at least 30 minutes, and as much as 45, until head is squishy.  Remove from oven and let rest several minutes until cool enough to handle.

4.  Here's the fun part.  Open the packages.  Over a bowl, turn the head cut-side down and hold onto the pointy end.  Squeeze down and watch the cloves pop out of their skins.  Make sure you get all of them, then discard the skin.  Use the cloves whole, diced, or mashed.

Difficulty rating  π

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