Saturday, March 6, 2010

Roasted Garlic

Garlic just might be my link with God.

Anyway, roasted garlic is amazing. And amazingly easy. It has a soft texture, a little bit like room temperature butter. And it's sweet and mellow, and you can eat cloves whole quite pleasurably. (Note: do not eat whole raw garlic cloves. No one wins, ok?)

It goes great as an appetizer or as a complement to a whole host of dishes. It makes a good dip or snack, or a great spread on pizza, garlic bread, or added whole to pastas and other garlic-friendly dishes.

  1. Cut off the top of the garlic cloves. That means the pointy top end, not the tough bottom. Cut off just a little bit, enough to see the inside of each clove, but not so much as to waste a lot of perfectly good garlic. This works for either a whole head, or just a few cloves at a time.
  2. Make a little foil package around the garlic. Put the garlic, either whole or separated, into the foil. 
  3. Top with a generous pat of butter. Seal up the top of the foil package.
  4. Bake at 350-400 for 40-60 minutes. I like to put mine in a muffin tin, in case it leaks a little. But any baking sheet or dish will work fine. 
  5. Let cool before using. To use, squeeze out the roasted garlic innards from the peel by squeezing the bottom of the clove between two fingers. Or, if you prefer, you can laboriously slice away the peel.
You can safely roast your garlic several days in advance, too, which is great for me, since I never have time to roast garlic and then cook. If I remember, I'll put garlic in at the same time I start dinner and use it later in the week. Just crinkle up some foil into a tightly sealed little package and refrigerate.


  1. I roast my garlic with olive oil rather than butter and a splash of water to help it steam. You can also salvage the tips of the cloves you cut off and throw them in a ravioli ragu the next day.

    BTW, the appetizer I make that you like (well, I think you do but I know Claire loves) is to roast the garic in its foil suit in the middle of a tray of quartered Roma tomatoes. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt (helps dehydrate), pepper and a smidge of garlic powder. Oven should be at 400. Tomotates should roast until slightly browned. The garlic might need a bit more time. When able to handle garlic, mash into one log of goat cheese. Slice a baguette into thin rounds and toast them up a bit in the oven. Enjoy.

  2. Oh! Yes! I was wondering about that. How many cloves do you use for a log of cheese?