Roasting Garlic

Garlic is one of the best herbs going – it adds so much flavour and aroma – and yet never seems used enough.

It has great health benefits and is especially good for heart smart diets (okay, not when used in buttery garlic bread).  I am half Ukrainian and the joke on my Mom’s side is often that it’s garlic that makes the women of the family live into their 90’s and sometimes early 100’s.

One of the best ways to eat garlic is to roast it – this makes the garlic a nutty sweet flavour and avoids the odour that many find unpleasant that comes from chopping it.

I bought a very cute garlic roaster – you’ll see why I say it’s cute in a moment.

When you roast garlic, you can add other spices. Usually, I use a blackened Cajun spice like for the Green St. Patrick’s Day Dinner – but this time, I decided on just using garden herbs.

lemon thyme, sage, savoury, rosemary, chive in olive oil

I picked herbs out of the pots in the back, gave them a quick rinse and into the olive oil. For a moment, I totally forgot what I was doing, and almost added Herb’s Crushed Garlic that I keep on hand for quick cooking. When I do herb rubs, I always add garlic. D’oh.

mortar and pestle grinding for goodness

Grinding all the herbs into the oil to release their herby goodness.

Prepping the garlic

Pour the herb oil into the pan and add more olive oil. Cut off the tops of three bulbs and place cut side down in the oil.  I also added a shallot for more flavour.

Under the pan, there’s a terra cotta ring that was soaked in water – you’ll see it later.

three bulbs and a shallot

close lid (isn't it cute) push button

So, it takes 27 mins to roast the garlic, so, let’s head out to the garden.

another pinks plant

dusty miller surrounded by pansies & backed by the bleeding heart

My dusty miller turns into a huge bush by the end of summer – I’ve had three for several years, but so far, this is the only one that’s come back.

pink tulip still in bloom

the backyard fancy columbine

Let’s head back to see the roasted garlic.

open and breath deep

I remove the garlic bulbs and place them cut side down on a plate so the oil that’s been drawn up with drip out.

I leave the oil and herbs to cool – and the bulbs because they are too hot to touch.

cooling the bulbs - there's the moisture ring

roasted garlic cloves

I didn’t want to touch my camera during the squeeze process – but basically, I hold the bottom of the bulb and squeeze like it’s a round toothpaste tube and the cloves slide out easily.

You can also pull the bulb apart and use the back of a spoon to put pressure on the uncut end so the clove pops right out.

pour the cool oil and cloves into an air tight glass jar

You can either use the seasoned oil in cooking or the garlic or both.

I ate two cloves before  I could put it in the fridge – it last up to 5 days in the fridge – so you can roast garlic on Sunday and use it all week in your cooking!