Posts tagged raw
Posts tagged raw
Garlic is an amazing thing. So I’ve been told by every Italian in my family. “It helps the blood” is often what I hear, and since that sound like a line from The Godfather I’m going to have to insist that it’s true. Moreover, garlic is incredibly tasty and adds a distinct earth-bound spice to dishes.
In my experience, cooked and uncooked garlic have entirely different flavors. The former pungent, sharp, the later is smoother, more mild. I love the taste of garlic, and hail to the trifecta of garlic preparation which allows me to use it in virtually anything I cook. In order to use garlic all the time, you only need to know three things. How to open, how to saute, and how to roast. Let’s dive right in,
After removing the stalk with a knife, break up the garlic with your thumb. At this stage you can do one of two things with your garlic,
To move onto chopping up the raw garlic simply crack the case by applying pressure to the clove with your palm. Sandwich the garlic between the broadside of a knife and a hard surface like a cutting board. Remove the skins and slice or chop.
To start the roasting process put the cloves in an oven safe pan. But, before exploring roasting let’s finish up talking about what you can do with the raw stuff.
For a great addition to homemade hummus add raw chopped garlic to chickpeas and olive oil. Blend until creamy! Or for a flavor-filled start to a stir-fry add to oil and other vegetables in a pan.
If you cook the garlic and other vegetables (onions and shallots are featured above) on high heat you might want to consider adding wine and letting the alcohol cook out. The result is a sweet and caramelized mixture. For example, I added the garlic and onions in the picture above to mashed sweet potatoes to make baked burgers. (Which is another post waiting to happen.)
But now let’s finish up the roasted garlic,
It’s easy to remember, a few little stabs in each piece and a drizzle of olive oil. Broil on low until you can see the flaky shells start to brown or char.
Be mindful when things broil. I’ve burnt many a piece of toast when I set the oven for boil on high and become preoccupied for 5 minutes. Take this out whenever it looks best to you, just be careful there isn’t too much charring or the taste will be less roasted and more burnt.
Once your garlic is roasted, it should look like the picture to the left. Let this cool and you’ll be surprised to find the skins come off easily after roasting. The image to the right shows the garlic without its casing.
You can chop this and add it to anything you would raw garlic. Instead of a bright flavor you’ll get more of a smokey one. The recipe I chose to feature the roasted garlic in is a useful topping which works as a salsa, omelet add-in, salad dressing starter, or spread.
Since you’ve already roasted the garlic let’s make this Red Pepper Topping,
Flip the cut peppers around in some olive oil and spices of your choosing. I like salt, pepper, and basil for this. Broil them on low until they look like the top right picture. Personally, I like to start roasting skin-side down and then flip when the inside of the pepper is tender because it is easier to tell when the skin-side is done cooking.
Next blend peppers, whole, and roasted garlic. Can’t blend? Then try finely chopping the garlic and the peppers for a chunkier topping which still tastes great.
The last image is the topping ironically topped with some pesto I made from basil, and sunflower seeds. Yet the red pepper topping works well on its own. For a salsa just dip some chips, for a dressing just thin out with your favorite vinegar and a splash of water or juice, for a spread just refrigerate and smear on toast.
I’m hoping you will come to find, the more you read, that the possibilities are endless.