The first creates beautifully aromatic individual cloves of garlic that are intended to be consumed whole.
The second melts the clove into a fragrant spreadable garlic that is perfect for slices of chewy Italian bread or for swirling in to your favorite recipe.
Individual Clove Method:
Preheat an oven to 400°F.
There is no need to use a large oven, just use your toaster oven.
Separate the cloves from a head or two of garlic. Leave the papery skins on each clove.
Roast the cloves in the preheated toaster oven for about 12-15 minutes.
Notice how the outer peels start to get a bit dry looking and begin to brown. If you poke a finger at one of the big ones, it will feel soft.
Remove the pan from the oven and let it sit on a hot pad on your counter until the garlic cools naturally.
This part is a little messy, but that is part of the mindful fun – especially in a kitchen that now smells absolutely fantastic!
The technique that works best for me is to slice and hold down the sliced off peel while lifting the clove up to turn it to slice the opposite end.
If the peel does not want to come off easily, make a small slice into the skin from one side to the other.
To prevent the papery garlic skin from sticking to your fingers, rinse your fingers in cool water once or twice.
Place the peels in the compost bin, and add the roasted cloves to your favorite recipe.
Whole Head Roasted Garlic for Spreading:
Preheat an oven to 400°
Peel off the loose papery skins from the outside of the head of garlic. Don’t try to peel off all the skins, just remove what comes off easily.
This exposes the lovely cloves within. Place the head of garlic on a piece of aluminum foil large enough to wrap the entire entire thing.
Drizzle the exposed cloves with a teaspoon or two of good extra virgin olive oil.
Wrap the foil around the bulb.
Place inside a small oven proof casserole dish and roast for about 40 minutes. Or double wrap with foil and allow about 10 more minutes to roast. The garlic is done when the cloves are very soft and have become golden in color.
Remove from the oven, open the top of the foil, and let cool naturally for 15 minutes.
To serve, remove a clove, still inside it’s papery sleeve, and push up from the bottom, smearing it on a piece of good sturdy bread. Spread it around with a knife. Add a little drizzle of more olive oil and enjoy.
Add the garlic to mashed potatoes or in place of measured amounts of roasted garlic in your favorite recipe.