Superfood Snack Hacks: Garlic
Garlic is one of the foundational flavors of cooking. Cultures around the world utilize garlic to make their recipes taste amazing, from the French to the Chinese. As we recently learned, garlic also has some excellent health benefits if you enjoy it fresh, making it a fantastic superfood for your diet! Today, we’re looking at a few recipes that can help you enjoy fresh garlic.
Since garlic is so popular, we have two recipes that make garlic the main focus and one that’ll make you look at garlic in a new way!
Roasted garlic can be a magical ingredient. To level with you, dear readers, this writer has eaten roasted garlic by itself before. Roasting garlic in the oven, with a little olive oil and salt, brings it a surprising sweetness and tones down some of the harshness of fresh garlic.
While not everyone will devour roasted garlic alone, it’s an excellent addition to many dishes. You can melt some butter and mash a roasted clove of garlic in it to make a simple roasted garlic butter. The softness of the roasted clove also makes it ideal to add to a simple pan sauce by mixing pasta water, roasted garlic, and tomatoes. Or again, you could just eat alone! It’s that tasty.
Simple Oven-Roasted Garlic Recipe
- 1 bulb of garlic
- 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tbsp of salt
- 1 tsp of pepper
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Remove the top layer of skin from the garlic bulb.
- Cut off the top half-inch of the garlic bulb, exposing the tops of the individual cloves.
- Spread out a roll of tinfoil, and place the bulb in the center.
- Drizzle one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil over the bulb, then sprinkle half a tablespoon of salt and one teaspoon of pepper over the bulb.
- Tightly wrap the tin foil around the bulb, then place it on a cookie sheet and put it in the oven. (The cookie sheet will keep any oil that drips out of the wrap from dirtying your oven.)
- Roast the bulb in the oven for about 30 minutes, then check the bulb. The cloves should be soft, but not overly mushy, and the bulb shouldn’t be burned.
- If the bulb needs a few minutes of roasting, put it back in the oven. Otherwise, let it cool, and you’re all done!
Shareable Fresh Garlic Bruschetta
Bruschetta (or the plural, Bruschette) is an excellent finger food for when you have company or just want to kick off dinner in a great way. Derived from the Roman dialect verb bruscare (to toast), bruschetta is generally toasted garlic bread drizzled with olive oil. Over time, other ingredients have been added to this appetizer, most commonly diced tomatoes, cheese, and a Balsamic vinaigrette reduction. That’s what’s so great about this dish — you can customize it!
Below, we’ll give you rough amounts of ingredients you can use for a shareable fresh garlic bruschetta, but don’t feel limited to them. If you like more basil, add more. The type of cheese you use can also change the flavor a great deal. We’re using Pecorino Romano for the rich, salty taste, but you could also use a fresh mozzarella or ricotta for a milder flavor.
Shareable Fresh Garlic Bruschetta
- ½ loaf of fresh Italian bread
- 1 clove of fresh garlic
- 5-8 Roma tomatoes
- 5-8 leaves of fresh basil
- ¼ cup of freshly grated Pecorino Romano
- 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil for toasting the bread
- Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle over the bread
- Balsamic vinegar to drizzle over the bread
- Slice half a loaf of fresh Italian bread into one-quarter-inch thick pieces.
- Lightly brush extra virgin olive on the slices of bread (roughly two tablespoons-worth). The slices should be covered but not damp, this will keep it from toasting.
- Broil the slices of bread in the oven on low for about two minutes per side, enough for them to toast, but not burn. For added flavor and showmanship, use a grill or grill pan for beautiful grill lines.
- Slice the clove of garlic in half and rub the cut side onto the toasted bread. This imparts a little garlic flavor directly on the bread.
- Dice the garlic clove and the Roma tomatoes, and distribute the pieces evenly on the toasted bread.
- Rough chop the fresh basil and sprinkle it evenly over the bruschette.
- Coarse grate (the largest holes on your grater) the Pecorino Romano and sprinkle it evenly over the bruschette.
- Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar over each bruschetta.
Karen’s Provencal Garlic Soup
Provencal garlic soup, also known as Aigo Bouido, is a rich, creamy dish that comes from the French region of Provence. If we’re making an article about recipes that utilize garlic, a garlic broth needs to be in here somewhere. Introduced to many by the legendary Julia Child, Aigo Bouido surprises many who don’t think garlic soup sounds super appetizing.
Combing several fresh ingredients, you can count on a savory taste that highlights garlic without going overboard. We’re borrowing this recipe from our friends at Fleur de Lys Farm. If you try the recipe and enjoy it, head over to their blog, and tell Laurie you loved it!
Karen’s Provencal Garlic Soup Recipe
- 8 cups of water
- ¾ cup of peeled garlic cloves
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- ⅓ cup of sliced onion
- ⅓ cup of sliced celery
- ⅓ cup of fennel
- ½ cup of white wine
- 4 fresh thyme sprigs
- ½ tsp of fresh rosemary leaves
- 5 cups of chicken stock
- 2 ¼ cups of half-and-half
- 1 slice coarse country bread, day old or lightly toasted
- 1 tbsp of salt
- 1 tsp of pepper
- In a large pot, combine water and garlic, and bring the water to a boil over high heat.
- Reduce to medium and simmer, uncovered, until garlic is translucent, about five minutes.
- Drain and reserve garlic. Return pot to medium heat and add olive oil.
- Heat 30 seconds, then add onion, celery, and fennel. Sauté until just tender, two to three minutes.
- Add garlic, reduce heat slightly and sauté, stirring frequently for two more minutes. Do not allow to brown.
- Add wine and cook until reduced by half.
- Add remaining ingredients.
- Stir well, reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally until reduced by one-fourth and creamy white, about 40 minutes.
- Remove and let cool 10 minutes.
- Blend, reheat over medium heat, and serve immediately.