Recipe by Witch Doctor
This simple yet sumptuous recipe is a United Nations plate. The whole roasted garlic is a staple Italian dish, the asadero is a contemporary melt-away white Mexican cheese, and the salsa is from Old Mexico. Or you can choose to put France on the plate by using Brie in place of the asadero. Set out oyster forks for the guests to use to lift the roasted garlic cloves whole from their skins. The cloves will spread like softened butter on a piece of French bread or warmed flour tortilla. Also, please note that Italian flat-leaf parsley may be substituted for the cilantro in the salsa.
- 4 whole garlic heads
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
For the Tomatillo-Cilantro Salsa
- 1⁄3 lb tomatillo, husks removed
- 1⁄2 small white onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 fresh serrano chili, stemmed
- 1⁄4 cup water
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 bunch fresh cilantro, stemmed or 1⁄2 bunch flat leaf parsley
- 6 ounces asadero cheese, cut into 4 equal pieces or 6 ounces brie cheese
- 1 loaf French bread, sliced (or 12 white-flour or whole-wheat tortillas)
Directions See How It's Made
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- To prepare the garlic bulbs for roasting, remove the excess papery skin but leave the bulbs whole. Cut off the top 1/2 inch of each bulb, exposing the tops of the individual garlic cloves. If some of the clove tops remain uncut, take a little slice off each with a Paring knife to expose the inside.
- Place the garlic bulbs, cut sides up, in a casserole or loaf pan and add water to reach halfway up the sides of the bulbs. Drizzle the olive oil evenly over the tops of the bulbs. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in the oven. Bake until the cloves feel soft when pressed, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, prepare the salsa. Place the tomatillos, onion, garlic, chili, and water in a blender or a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Add the cilantro or parsley and process until smooth. Do not add the cilantro or parsley until just before serving because it will lose its flavor and bright green color. You will have about 3/4 cup salsa.
- To serve, preheat a broiler. Place 1 piece of the cheese on each of 4 flameproof serving plates. Run the plates under the broiler until the cheese just begins to melt, 3 to 5 minutes. Be careful not to allow the cheese to melt into a puddle. Place a garlic bulb next to the cheese and flood the plate with the salsa. Accompany with French bread or tortillas.