2 plump bulbs garlic
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
Several grinds of fresh pepper
Optional 4 sprigs of thyme finely chopped
Or if you want to do more garlic use 1 tablespoon of garlic for each head of garlic and season appropriately.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. With a very sharp knife, remove just enough of the root end of the garlic bulb to flatten it enough to sit upright. Slice off approximately 1/4 to 1/2 inch of the pointed top of a bulb of garlic. Each clove should be slightly exposed, but do not remove too much of the cloves’ flesh. Do not peel the garlic bulb but rather roast it in its papery covering. Place the full bulb on a piece of foil. Sprinkle on a few drops of water, and then pour the olive oil on the heads, cut-side up then sprinkle on the salt and pepper. Pull corners of foil up to enclose and fold over to seal tightly. Place the foil packet in a oven and roast until cloves are golden brown and tender, for about 1 hour or until garlic is very tender and soft, and the papery covering has begun to brown but has not blackened. The cloves at this point can be pierced easily with the tip of a sharp paring knife. Remove packet from the oven and allow the garlic to cool. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, push on the bottom of the bulb and squeeze the roasted garlic out from the skins into a bowl. Then mash the cloves to form a paste. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. (At this point the paste can be used or stored in the refrigerator or freezer.
The roasted garlic can be served at room temperature and used in place of butter on the dinner table. Serve as a spread on bread and garnish with chopped parsley or mash up and stir into a favorite sauce or use as base for dip or dressing.
Recipe via Bridgette Server