Posts Tagged ‘garlic’

11th December
written by Arthur

Slate recently had  an interesting article on the (de)merits of garlic. It captures how I’ve always felt about the stuff–it’s not a substitute for fresh garlic, but has its own place in the kitchen.  The article elaborates:

[G]arlic powder acts like glue behind glitter, adding a subtle fullness of flavor that may be more difficult to detect, but nonetheless makes the meal taste better. Like MSG, garlic powder may not be specifically discernable, but in a side-by-side comparison, the otherwise identical dish with added garlic powder will win… I often find myself adding fresh garlic at both the beginning and end of meal prep, and sprinkling powder in the middle. The trick is never to add so much that someone could say, “I taste garlic powder.”

The author goes on to suggest making your own garlic powder. While that sounds fun and all, I’m going to be sticking with my store bought stuff for the near future.

12th November
written by Arthur

A frosted bowl of garlic butter.

On my way home from watching the glorious Vikings’ victory over the Lions, my mind was on the beef stew simmering away in the slow cooker on the counter at home.

My Saturday idleness meant that I didn’t experiment with baking bread as I had planned–so I picked-up a loaf from a neighborhood bakery on my walk from the train.  There was just one thing missing: butter.

I had butter in the fridge, but I wanted something more.  I wanted garlic butter.



  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 4 garlic cloves


If you have a mortar and pestle, give the fresh garlic a course dice and mash until you have paste.  (If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, dice finely and use the side of a knife to smash out a garlic paste.)  Combine the butter and garlic in a small bowl and microwave for 20 seconds until mostly liquefied   Stir/mash the warm butter garlic mixture.  Set in the freezer for 10 minutes if you want it to harden quickly or place in the fridge until ready to serve.

The Result:

Vampires beware!  Here there be garlic buttered bread that goes great with stew!

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25th October
written by Arthur

One of the best pizzas at my favorite pizza place introduced me to this strange ingredient.  The bartender told me had to order the Smoked Pancetta pizza just to give the black garlic topping a try.  And he was right.  Each blackened clove was delicious.

So how does black garlic get its color?  There are false rumors that the darkness is imparted through a balsamic vinegar infusion.  Though the infusion theory is believable from the flavor, the real secret is fermentation.  South Korea pioneered its use and chefs here in the good old US of A have started integrating it into their dishes.

The black garlic’s flavor is subdued relative to its raw, or even cooked, relations.  The closest approximation is roasted garlic.  But with a similar mellow flavor and hints of sweetness,  the black garlic also offers up some elusive savoriness.

Every time I order the Smoked Panchetta, I dream of a little dish filled with these black diamonds, some freshly toasted bread, and a knife for spreading.  Thankfully I just thought to look through the great series of tubes that is the internet and have found the stuff is widely available.  Black garlic bread, here I come!

29th November
written by Loren

Hello food fans,

It’s been about 5-6 weeks since my last post. I would apologize for the delay but at this point it seems to be becoming a pattern that I post in bunches and then dissapear for a while, so maybe you should just expect that at this point. Anyways, I’ve got some great ideas and recipes which are coming your way over the next month or two, including: Oreo cake balls, the best stuffing recipe EVAR, White Chicken Chili, grilled pheasant breasts, and some homemade eggnog when we get close to Christmas!

Today’s recipe comes from… nowheres in particular. I stopped at the grocery store on my way home from work one night and got a hankering for some kind of garlicky-creamy goodness which I could spread on crackers. Since this particular grocery store happened to sell roasted garlic cloves in their olive bar, I went for those. A week later I re-made the recipe with a few tweaks which really brought everything together.

  • 1 brick of cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup roasted garlic cloves
  • 1 raw garlic clove, roughly chopped
  • 1 package basil leaves (15  big leaves or so?)
  • 4 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup shredded/grated Parmesan
  • 1 pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt & pepper
  • Sprinkle of red wine vinegar
  • a big dollop of  sour cream (optional)

Combine everything but the cream cheese in a food processor and pulse until its a roughly homogeneous mixture, then add the cream cheese and process until everything is mixed together.  You can do a few different things with this; I imagine it would be great as a sandwich spread, you could make pinwheels, you could probably thin this out with some milk and white wine to make a bitchin’ pan sauce for something like roasted chicken, or you could just spread it on same fancy crackers and top it with some thinly sliced capocollo.  I chose the latter route, and it was well received by the Thanksgiving crowd.

On a side note, please do yourself a favor and go buy a half pound of capocollo. This delicious salumi is dry cured from the meat on the neck and shoulder cuts of the pig. It’s like a cross between canadian bacon, real bacon (take that Canada!), and prosciutto. It’s not usually smoked to the best of my knowledge, but there is sometimes a spicy or savory coating on the outside of the meat. The marbling, which is amply demonstrated below, is incredible and gives it a deep, rich flavor. Get your butcher to slice it thin, and eat a few slices while you walk around the grocery store and decide what you want to do with this manna from heaven.

om nom nom