Raw garlic is famous for its pungent smell and how it can ward off vampires, but it’s also famous for being a very healthy food item. However, roasting garlic gets rid of its putrid smell so it can be a pleasant snack overall. Now that’s not as straightforward as it may seem.
The best way to roast garlic is not as cut and dry as you may think. It’s not just throwing the garlic in to the oven and hoping for the best (though that is part of it, of course).
However, you want to preserve the flavor of the garlic rather than just roast the living daylights out of it. And of course, the nutrients, if spoiled, make the garlic practically useless for consumption. And no one wants to consume an empty husk.
Real roasted garlic is very soft and caramel in color and it tastes equally fantastic. All of that is a result of the roasting process, and the care that goes in to preparing it.
Here is the proper way to roast garlic.
How to Roast Garlic
The first thing to do is to remove the outer layer of the bulb; however, make sure that you don’t remove the skins so that you can keep the cloves attached. Slice off the top layer of the bulb so you can expose the cloves next.
Once this is done, drizzle the bulbs with olive oil and wrap them in foil. Remember to be generous with the olive oil; about 2 tablespoons of olive oil per head of garlic.
The bulbs can be wrapped individually or be grouped together depending on your preference. You can also arrange the individual bulbs of garlic in a muffin tin which has already been drizzled with oil and then cover the top with aluminum foil.
The next thing to do is to put them in the oven and roast till they’re golden brown, which can take about 30-40 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400 F for about 10 minutes before you begin. During the roasting process, keep checking the texture at regular intervals. You can do this by pricking the surface with a toothpick or matchstick. Make sure that the texture is soft as butter.
As a matter of personal preference, you can roast the garlic for longer than 30-40 minutes or until it turns into your preferred shade of golden brown. However, remember to continuously check the garlic every 10 minutes to make sure you’re not overcooking it.
Next, you should wait for your garlic cloves to cool. Patience is a virtue; especially when it comes to the culinary arts.
Once they’ve cooled, you can squeeze out individual cloves and then set them on your plate straight to eat as a tasty snack. You can dig in with a knife and fork, or just eat with your hands and even spread it on some toast and make a quick meal out of it. Additionally, you can also mash up the roasted garlic and store it to use in other recipes.
Roasting the Cloves
Another way to roast garlic is to peel the garlic cloves beforehand. You need to preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking dish or pie plate with foil and place the garlic cloves on them. Drizzle them complete with oil and then wrap them with the foil to make a packet. Then continue to roast for about 30-40 minutes.
Dishes that include Roasted Garlic
Roasted garlic can be used to make all sorts of dishes that are made tastier by its inclusion. Here are just a few:
White Bean and Kale Soup
This dish can be made in 30 minutes with mashed beans and kale. It’s a great way to start a healthy eating habit since the dish is vegetarian and gluten-free. Just add garlic, thyme and parmesan rind and then put it over rice and you’ll get a great meal.
Roasted garlic can make Hummus even creamier. Make sure that the garlic you put in is as soft as butter and then mix it in. You won’t even believe that you have tasted the same thing as before.
For this dish, you can roast the garlic for up to 60 minutes, or until a knife can go through it like butter. This is to make the dish creamier and tastier overall.
Who doesn’t love mashed potatoes? If there’s a way to make this dish even tastier, and then mix in some roasted garlic for increased sensory pleasure and great taste.
Red Wine Vinaigrette
This recipe requires that you have roasted garlic cloves instead of roasted garlic. It really helps to seal in the flavor and increases the surface area to volume ratio for a great mix.
This is a dish that is associated almost exclusively as French, however, you can spread roasted garlic on it to give it a unique flavor.
Benefits of Roasted Garlic
There are numerous benefits of Roasted Garlic that you can reap all year round if you make a habit out of it. They apparently help in combating the likeliness of cancer and prevent free radical damage (ionizing radiation that damages your body).
Roasted garlic also gets rid of excess fluids and fat in the body and even destroys bacteria due to its antibacterial properties.
Overall, consuming roasted garlic contributes to strengthening your immune system, increasing bone strength, lowering blood pressure, boosting longevity of cells, eliminating fatigue and regulating cholesterol.
This can improve your overall cardiovascular health and prevent the entrance of heavy metals in to the body. It can also leave you feeling really fit and improve your athletic performance.
Consuming garlic, like most natural vegetables and fruits, is good for you. But since you can make a tastier snack out of it and get rid of that pungent smell, roasting it is the best way to consume it.