Hey guys! I just wanted to post this quick, little recipe for some of the most amazing braised garlic! You’ve probably heard of roasted garlic, and you’ve probably even had some dishes with it. It adds a lovely, deep, wonderful garlic flavor, while stripping away all of the harsh aspects of the taste. It can be easily spread on toasted bread, worked into soups and sauces, or simple eaten on it’s own. I know, I’m weird. But believe me – it’s that good.
Even as good as roasted garlic is, I prefer braised garlic instead. It’s the same kind of idea, but it involves more liquid. I always add chicken stock and white wine, as well as some herbs to punch up the flavor a bit. The main reason that I usually choose to make braised garlic is because I use the added liquid as the base for the sauce of whatever I’m making for dinner. In this case, the oil, chicken stock, wine, and herbs became an extremely flavorful base for a sauce I used to make Wild Rice Carbonara Risotto (recipe coming soon!). So just imagine how delicious and deep the sauce that comes from this would be. I’ll give you a hint – it’s pretty damn delicious.
Aside from just being delicious, braised garlic is one of the easiest things you’ll ever make, and it will reap one of the best rewards. Endlessly versatile, incredibly adaptable, amazingly delicious. It can be used literally in any of the same ways or recipes as boring old roasted garlic… but it gives the the benefit of creating an excellent base for a future sauce!
With just a handful of pantry and fridge staples, this recipe comes together in less than an hour, and is easy to keep either in the fridge or the freezer. I typically just put all of the garlic into a ziplock bag and keep it in the freezer until I need a clove or two to throw into something. The oil that’s saturated into the garlic helps keep it semi-frozen and easy to separate, while preserving the flavor and integrity of the garlic. So try it out and see what you think! I think you may just be turned from roasted garlic from now on!
Perfectly Perfect (Braised) Garlic
- 4 heads of garlic; topped chopped off, exposing a little of each clove
- Olive oil; roughly 3 Tbsp. or as much as desired
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- A few sprigs of thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp. peppercorns
- 1 chile de arbol, or other chile (as desired)
- 1/2 c. chicken or veggie stock
- 1/4 c. dry white wine
- Preheat oven to 375°.
- Place garlic into dutch oven (I use a 2 3/4qt Le Creuset) with the root side down. Drizzle olive oil onto the tops of the garlic bulbs, and rub in with your finger to make sure it covers each clove, as well as its in between them. After the tops are covered, drizzle more oil on top, because more oil never hurt anyone, and it will help flavor the sauce that you make later.
- Place rosemary, thyme and bay leaf, peppercorns, and chili into the dutch oven. Carefully pour wine and chicken stock against the side of the dutch oven, to avoid splashing on top of the garlic and washing the oil off the top.
- Put on the lid, and place into the oven for 30-45 minutes. Depending on the size of your bulbs, and how soft you like them to be will determine the cooking time. For my bulbs, I set the timer for 35 minutes, took them out to check, decided they needed more time, and put them back in the oven for five more minutes.
- If you want to, remove the lid for the last five minutes of oven time. This lets the chicken stock and wine reduce with the oil to create a more intense flavor in the liquid for your sauce afterward. This step is completely optional, but is highly recommended.
- Remove from the oven and place garlic onto a plate. Let cool for a few minutes before trying to squeeze out the cloves. I recommend using a set of tongs to grab the bulb from the bottom, and rotate while squeezing the garlic out. Some of the cloves will squeeze out like toothpaste, and other will slide out whole – either way is fine.
- Bag the cloves in a freezer ziploc, and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.