In a really great relationship, there is always a moment when your significant other says something that makes you go, “Ahh, yes. This person is home.” After that, you can put your feet up on the couch and stop wearing makeup all the time. For me and my boyfriend Dan, that moment took place one of our first times cooking a meal together. We’ve always loved to cook together. It’s a fun way to spend time with each other, and the payoff is an excellent meal! Anyway…I forget what we were making, but the recipe called for minced garlic. Our conversation went something like this…
Me: Okay, next is 1 clove of garlic.
Dan: How much is a clove?
Me: Well, the label on the jar says one teaspoon equals one clove…but that seems small. Would you be okay making it a tablespoon instead?
Dan: How about two?
Me: …yeah! Sure. I love garlic!
Dan: Really? Me too…I really really love garlic. Let’s make it three tablespoons.
And a romance was born. When we went through our first jar of minced garlic together, it was a real milestone in our relationship. For a while we measured the progress of our relationship through jars of minced garlic. At this point we’ve stopped counting, but our love for garlic continues to be a strong bond between us. :)[caption id="attachment_94" align="aligncenter" width="225"] garlic lovin’ fiends…and yes that is beer pong in the background. classy.[/caption]
Enough with the romance, though–let’s get down to business! The other day I had a hankering for homemade bread. Being on vacation, I actually had time to make it. But I started thinking about the really great bread we get sometimes from the grocery store–the kind that has pieces of roasted garlic stuck right into it. Growing up, my mom’s boyfriend Tom always bought that bread, and we’d use it for toast and it. was. DIVINE! So I got out my standard bread recipe and googled “how to roast garlic,” and I was off.
But wait! I had all these chives sitting around that I had harvested from the garden…so I decided to toss those in as well![caption id="attachment_95" align="aligncenter" width="200"] …that’s a lot o’ chives.[/caption]
Roasting garlic is way easier than I thought it would be. I used three small heads for the bread. First, you peel off just enough of the outside layers so that you can see the individual cloves.[caption id="attachment_96" align="aligncenter" width="300"] …like so. and yes, i need to redo my nails.[/caption]
Then you chop off enough of the top so that you can see into each (or most) of the cloves. I used a muffin pan, and lined three of the cups with aluminum foil. Then you just rub some olive oil over each head of garlic, close up the foil, and put it in the oven! I did 35 minutes at 350 degrees, but I found varying directions on the internet.[caption id="attachment_97" align="aligncenter" width="300"] mmm…smothered in olive oil…[/caption] [caption id="attachment_98" align="aligncenter" width="300"] all wrapped up & ready to roast![/caption]
When time is up, you can either use a fork or your hands to push out the cloves from the head–they come out really easily! I found using my hands easier…but of course then you have to let it cool a bit. Then you just mash it up with a fork a bit. You can certainly leave them intact, but for the sake of my bread I mashed up nice n’ good.[caption id="attachment_99" align="aligncenter" width="300"] mashed up garlic![/caption]
SO! Moving on to the bread. I use this recipe I found from this lovely little blog on wordpress. She posts some great stuff. I searched for a long time for a good bread recipe that didn’t need to sit overnight, and luckily I found this gem! It’s a great recipe–always comes out good, and it doesn’t take as much time as most other bread recipes. I have trouble shaping it round without it flattening out a bit…I should probably invest in a better pan for that.
Here’s the list of what you need:
- 5-6 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon sugar (I used an extra teaspoon in the yeast)
- 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
- 2 cups warm water
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Roasted garlic (I used three small heads of garlic)
- A handful of chopped chives
First, I got my yeast going. Yeast weirds me out. It feels weird. Looks weird. Smells funny, too. But without it, you have no bread! So follow package instructions and add in warm water and sugar to activate the yeast.[caption id="attachment_100" align="aligncenter" width="300"] hi there yeast! you’re weird but I need you.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_101" align="aligncenter" width="300"] activated yeast…weird.[/caption]
Then you mix that baby in with 2 cups of flour, 1 teaspoon of sugar, and 2 cups of warm water. Let it sit for an hour so it can rise.
Next, you add the oil and salt, then add in more flour…about a 1/2 cup at a time. The overall recipe calls for 5 cups but I am pretty sure I use more than that. After adding in a cup or so, I tossed in the roasted garlic and a big handful of chopped chives. Then you knead, knead, knead! For about 10ish minutes.[caption id="attachment_102" align="aligncenter" width="300"] kneaded bread! look at them chives![/caption]
Then you let it sit for another hour so that it can rise. And then it looks like this:[caption id="attachment_103" align="aligncenter" width="300"] IT HAS RISEN.[/caption]
Next, line a pan with parchment paper (or spray it with vegetable oil). Then shape your dough into a round(ish) form and let it sit for another hour. I’d like to invest in a good-sized round pan so that mine looks a little less…flat. Haha.[caption id="attachment_104" align="aligncenter" width="300"] so round. so garlicky.[/caption]
Then you bake it in the oven at 35 minutes at 425 degrees…and voila! You have garlicy, chivey, bready deliciousness![caption id="attachment_105" align="aligncenter" width="300"] dee-licious![/caption]
This stuff is wonderful on it’s own, but it makes GREAT toast. So to those who love garlic the way that I do, I raise a piece of this divine bread and toast to you and our collective stinky breath! <3