Prep 30 mins
Cook 45 mins
Like sooo many others, I love garlic and whatever an amount a recipe calls for, I usually up it threefold. When I roast garlic, I make lots at a time as it gets messy squeezing the garlic out at the end, because I want it very soft. My garlic comes in packs of five tied up in mesh. I usually roast six packs (30 heads) at a time I also store it a bit differently then what I've seen in other recipes. PLEASE do not be put off by the length of instructions as I made it as smiple as possible for new cooks!
- 30 whole fresh bulbs of garlic (*)
- 1⁄4-1⁄3 cup balsamic vinegar
- cooking spray
- Using a large baking pan with sides (I use a 9x13x2 inch), cover completely with tinfoil.
- Spray tinfoil with cooking spray at least twice (I like to step outside to do this) and set aside.
- Remove as much of the loose, paperthin covering from the bulbs that you can by hand. If it does not come off easily, don't take it off.
- Working on a cutting board, using a sharp heavy knife, cut through the tops of each bulb. Save the tops. Don't take bulbs apart.
- Place all the cut bulbs in the pan. They should be touching each other.
- Sprinkle the vinegar over the tops of garlic bulbs. If you have a small spray bottle that you can put the vinegar into, all the better.**.
- At this time, you can add some salt, lightly to the tops, if you wish (I don't).
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees after you cut the bulb tops off.
- Cover the entire pan tightly with tinfoil.
- Place pan in middle half of hot oven.
- Lower heat to 350 degrees.
- Bake for 30 to forty-five minutes.
- Remove from oven in 30 minutes and test for doneness WITHOUT removing tinfoil. Using a thin sharp knife, stab once at garlic bulbs that are in center of pan. If knife goes in easily, remove tinfoil and return pan to oven for 15 minutes more for browning. If bulbs are not soft, bake another 15 minutes or until soft and then brown.
- Remove pan from oven and let cool on rack before trying to handle. The garlic can sit for up to three hours without it being affected poorly.
- REMOVAL AND STORING:.
- This is the messy part, no getting away from it. I have been known to wear thin rubber gloves (I save the kind that comes with hair dying kits) for this next part, but don't bother anymore. This is also why I make so much at a time.
- Over bowl, holding a bulb, cut side facing down, squeeze until bulbs pop out. If they are overcooked, it will be very mushy (this is how I like it). Get as much out as possible using free hand to help pull out.
- When all bulbs are done, check bowl for any skins that may have come off, and remove.
- Mash with a fork until very creamy and smooth. You can also put bulbs into a mini mixer until smooth. I don't because by the time I get all the garlic out, I'm finished by hand.
- You can store garlic in fridge for up to a month like this or freeze and keep until the next ice age. When freezing, you can divide in many ways; using half cups, using ice cube trays, or my way!
- Open a fresh gallon freezer storage bag.
- Spoon in the mashed garlic. Place on a flat surface and press garlc press down, til it fills the bag. If there is too much garlic, use two bags. After you have pressed the garlic throughout the bag, along with the air. Seal it. Place it flat in your freezer and when hard, put this bag inside another freezer bag and seal.
- Now, when you want to use the garlic, remove from the freezer at the time you are ready to use. Don't let it stand around waiting for you, as I have found that each time it defrosts and re-freezes, it loses some of its potency.
- Open bag and with the blunt end of a butter knife, cut the amount you want to use, slip the knife between the garlic and the bag and lift out. Return unused portion to freezer.
- * Garlic tops: Don't throw them away! Make some garlic broth, of course!
- ** I saved a spray margarine container for this.