Mmm, garlic. It is such a distinct flavor and you either love it or hate it. I know people on both sides. Unfortunately Bradley was not necessarily thrilled with this weeks theme, but he was a champ and tried everything I made. I think I’ll be eating most of the leftovers but he gave it a valiant effort.
I love garlic. Yes, it gives you that horrid breath that makes anyone avoid kissing you but it is so healthy for you how can you avoid it? I really think it gives you that flavor that makes a dish, whether it’s garlic powder or fresh cloves of garlic. In the recipes this week, I used fresh garlic because it worked the best in the recipes I made.
Another reason I used fresh garlic was because – well you remember that farm fresh day I volunteered at? Well, my mom handed me a two pound bag of garlic. Yes, two pounds. Like what to you do with two pounds of garlic? Ward off vampires?
Well other than warding off the undead, I figured it would be beneficial to eat the garlic. And wow, did I try… I mean I made three separate dishes with as much garlic as I could manage without getting ridiculous., and I think I still have one pound left! Needless to say, many things in this household are going to have a hint of garlic in them over the next month. (I also love how long garlic can be stored, especially since I keep mine in a terra cotta container on the counter.)
Ok, ok so on to my recipes. I actually made an entire meal with garlic laden recipes for this week’s theme and I’m going to give them to you one at a time. I do have to say though, if you are as much of a garlic lover as me, you can pair all three of them together and have a garlic party.
The first one I am going to start you off with is essentially the side dish. It’s also my favorite one because I roasted the garlic. If you have never roasted garlic, it’s ridiculously easy and turns the otherwise bitter garlic into a soft, sweet flavor that highlights almost any dish. All you have to do is cut a head of garlic in half exposing all the cloves. Place it in a piece of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and bake for about 45 minutes at 400 degrees until golden and soft.
Once you have that lovely roasted garlic, you can add it to pretty much anything: soup, pasta dishes, sauces etc. I added it to mashed potatoes along with a bit of parmesan cheese to give it a bite. Maybe I just love cheese in my mashed potatoes, don’t you? The potatoes are a thought process though. You could use regular russet potatoes (I would peel them at least), but that’s pretty standard and they can be plain and boring. Both red potatoes or gold potatoes work really well because you don’t have to peel them – unless you want you – but they end to be smoother and less mealy then russets.
Growing up my mom would make mashed potatoes quite often and it was the one thing we would actually call the men into the kitchen for. Most of the time we kick them out because they have a tendency to stand right in the middle of the kitchen, making it next to impossible to cook. I vote the only time non cooks are allowed in the kitchen are to pour wine for the cooks or to mash the potatoes.
Years ago my dad did the honors, but more often we now get my brother Stephen to use his muscles to mash the crap out of a bunch of potatoes. Hey, they deserve it. They also deserve butter. Lots of butter, and maybe cheese. In the case of these potatoes, you can get that all.
- 2 pounds gold potatoes, chopped
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 head garlic, roasted, peeled and chopped
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper
- Boil potatoes over medium high heat until fork tender. Drain off water then add butter, sour cream and milk. Mash with a potato masher until smooth. Add garlic, parmesan and salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Serve hot.