I cook with garlic a lot. It is a cheap and simple way to add big flavor to recipes. However, when I want to really boost the flavor of a dish, I use roasted garlic. When garlic is roasted, something magical happens. Seriously. It mellows and becomes soft and sweet and creamy. Just delicious! You can use it in place of regular garlic in any dish or add it to dips, stir it into mayo to make a delicious spread, put it on pizza or in pasta sauce, the sky's the limit! I made some the other day and used it to make hummus. It was so good and good for me, to boot! Plus, it was super easy. Here's how I did it:
HOW TO ROAST GARLIC
1 head of garlic (If you are doing it, you might as well make more than one. If you don't, you'll wish you had)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut the very top of the head of garlic off, exposing the cloves. Like this:
Place the garlic on a piece of foil big enough to wrap around it. Drizzle with a little oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Wrap the foil loosely around the garlic, sealing ends.
Bake at 450 degrees for 45 minutes.
It comes out golden brown and very soft. Cool a little, then squeeze the garlic out of the skin.
Store in a little jar or a zip top bag in the fridge.
I call these little golden nuggets of yumminess! I could've just spread them on crackers and eaten as is. But, I used it in hummus instead. Don't freak when you see peanut butter in this recipe. I cannot find tahini (sesame paste). By mixing peanut butter and sesame oil, I get a similar result. It's a great substitute.
ROASTED GARLIC HUMMUS
1 can chick peas, drained and rinsed
1 head of roasted garlic
1 TBS peanut butter
1 TBS sesame oil
In a food processor, mix chick peas, roasted garlic, peanut butter and sesame oil. Pulse until mixed. It will be coarse. Stream in olive oil while processor runs until you get a smooth consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper. I like to let it sit in the fridge for at least an hour so the flavors can develop.
This hummus is delicious! That roasted garlic adds a sweetness that is just perfect. This dip is a great snack with crackers, chips or veggies or put it in a pita with lettuce and tomato for a light lunch.
I hope this has inspired you to roast some garlic. Now that you see how easy it is, why wouldn't you?