Preserving garlic in this way is easy and not only gives you wonderfully flavoured garlic cloves to use in dressings, marinades, soups, sauces and mashed potatoes to name but a few of its uses, but also produces a fabulously flavoured oil which has any number of uses.
Confit is a French term which simply means “to preserve”. This is usually done in fat (meats), oil (vegetables) or sugar syrup (fruit). The food is slowly cooked in the liquid then stored in it for preservation. The confitting process cooks, tenderises and intensifies the flavour of the food. Duck, goose and pork are among the best known confits.
When a recipe calls for roasted garlic and you have confit garlic in the fridge it is the perfect alternative. Now is the time to prepare confit garlic, as the summer garlic bulbs tend have plump, juicy cloves which is exactly what you are looking for.
Makes about 1½ cups garlic cloves in oil
4-6 garlic bulbs
3 small sprigs fresh rosemary
3 small bay leaves
½ tsp Orcona chipotle flake
1-1½ cups olive or vegetable oil
1 Divide garlic bulbs into cloves and peel – you should have about 1 cup of cloves, a few more or less won’t make a difference.
2 Place garlic, rosemary, bay leaves and chipotle flake in a saucepan. Pour over oil to completely cover the garlic – add a little more if necessary, it will depend on the size of the pan you are using.
3 Place saucepan over a low heat for about 30 minutes or until garlic is tender, but not brown – at the most the garlic should be lightly coloured.
4 Remove pan from heat and set aside to cool. Then transfer garlic and herbs to a clean sterilised jar. Pour over cooking oil to
cover, seal and store in the refrigerator.
Cooks Notes: Confit Garlic will keep in the refrigerator for 4-6 months, bring to room temperature before using and always remove the cloves using a clean spoon to avoid contaminating the oil.
SOME EASY WAYS TO USE CONFIT GARLIC
- Garlic Butter: Mash several cloves of confit garlic and mix into softened butter – use as spread on bread or place under the skin of chicken before roasting.
- Garlic Spread: For a quick and flavoursome snack, simply spread confit garlic cloves straight on slices of fresh baguette.
- Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Add 3-4 cloves confit garlic to potatoes when mashing.
Happy cooking and eating.
Recipe by Rachel Blackmore
Would you like to receive more great recipes and news from Rachel’s Kitchen NZ?
Subscribe to Rachel’s Kitchen NZ for daily updates via email. Just enter your email address and press ‘Subscribe’.