Baked “New” Garlic with Creamed Goat’s Cheese

July 17, 2008 | By | COMMENTS

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You’ve seen it at the farmer’s market, you’ve read about it on Ruhlman’s blog. It’s the tall, stalky plant that look like Beaker the muppet when held upside down.

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[Image assembled haphazardly in Photoshop with picture from Ruhlman's blog and a stretched-out picture of Beaker.]

It’s new garlic, or Spring garlic, or green garlic (depending on who you talk to) and it’s prized in the food community for its subtlety, its nuance, and its unique, Springy flavor. I’d cooked with green garlic before (see green garlic soup) and yet I hadn’t been entirely won over.

But now I’m whistling a different tune, thanks to my new favorite cookbook: Roast Chicken And Other Stories by Simon Hopkinson. The recipe he offers is truly simple, and yet in its simplicity lies the key to unlocking the mystery and the beauty of new/green/Spring garlic.

Here’s my interpretation of his easy recipe.

Buy as much green garlic as you would like; I bought one bunch, which contained four bulbs.

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Preheat the oven to 400.

Cut the bulbs away from the stalk, about 1/4 of the way into the bulbs. Then cut off the Beaker hair because Beaker hair doesn’t taste good in food (though, according to Ruhlman, you should taste it. I hadn’t read his post yet when I did this, so next time I’ll try the Beaker hair.)

Place the bulbs in a baking dish and pour in 3/4 cup olive oil. If you have thyme and rosemary tuck them around the bulbs; I didn’t have them on hand, so I just used bay leaves. Cut a lemon into 6 wedges, squeeze the lemon over the bulbs and then place the lemon wedges in the baking dish too. Sprinkle the whole thing with salt and pepper; it should look like this:

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Place in the oven and check it after 10 minutes; if the oil’s bubbling, turn the temperature down to 325. Then bake for a further 40 to 50 minutes until the garlic is roasted a golden brown (see top picture.)

Meanwhile–and here’s where it gets good–put some soft goat’s cheese (rindless goat’s cheese; about 6 oz) in a bowl and mash up with 6 Tbs of heavy cream. I used a fork for this and you won’t believe how creamy it gets. Add chili flakes and salt to taste. Place in a bowl.

Finally, toast some bread. I bought French bread which I cut in half horizontally, coated in olive oil and baked in the oven for a bit. I wish I’d used my broiler but I’m scared of my broiler–I’ve never used it! Ideally, the bread will get toasty and brown but my bread just got a little darker. Still, it worked perfectly well:

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This was a huge hit. You spread the goat cheese on the bread and then squeeze the roasted garlic on top. Somehow these components all come together to create a Springtime symphony in your mouth. Those of you who’ve had roasted normal garlic in the past, will appreciate the subtlety of this Spring garlic, the delicate sweetness, the verdancy if that’s a word and according to my spellcheck it’s not. Hang on: according to a random internet dictionary it means, “the quality or condition of being green.” That sounds good to me. It’s not easy being green, but it sure tastes good. Eat some green garlic now.

Tags: , , ,

Categories: Appetizers, Recipes

  • Katie

    This looks amazing! Think it would work with plain ol’ supermarket garlic? No good farmer’s markets around here unfortunately…

  • Elizabeth

    New garlic is a very popular accompaniment in Bulgaria to roasted meats. It’s a much simpler presentation – you get a plate full of lamb, for instance, that has been roasting in a sealed clay over for 10 hours, with a few peeled cloves of this garlic. Bite of lamb, bite of garlic…it’s quite shocking when you realize you are meant to eat it straight, but it really is mild enough. Just make sure everyone at the table is doing the same!

  • http://hungrybruno.blogspot.com Adrienne

    Do you ever get the feeling that there are so many things out there you want to try you cannot possibly imagine having enough time to cook them all? This post made me hungry, and gave me that too many recipes/too little time feeling. I’ll look for green garlic at the market this week :)

  • zeep

    Holy crap monkeys, this looks awesome! You’ve inspired me again AG. Love the Beaker reference as well… I’m tempted to photoshop your grinning mug onto a bulb of green garlic now… don’t think I won’t do it!

  • http://www.cooklocal.com John Eddy

    Your Beaker… he appears, how do you say… Purple?

    And that looks darn tasty.

  • http://chewonthatblog.com Hillary

    Is that that the “ugly plate”?!

  • http://thefoodmonsteblog.blogspot.com The Food Monster

    http://thefoodmonsterblog.blogspot.com

    Garlic in any form is delicious and great for your health. Personally, I don’t find “Old” Garlic too strong, especially if you bake it like the above recipe until it spreads like butter.

    Thank you for bringing “New” Garlic to my attention, I will have to start cooking with it.

  • cybercita

    hey, adam,

    i’m the woman who accosted you at the greenmarket when you were trying to buy the stuff to make this.

    i forgot to tell you how much i liked your book!

  • http://tricoquine.blogs.com Stefanie

    Another alternative that uses less olive oil is to chop off the tips of the heads, then drizzle a little oil, cover in aluminum paper and pop in the oven at 400°F for 40 minutes. It comes out soft and spreadable…

  • Melinda

    Thanks for the yummy recipe! I too bought new garlic for the first time this year and made it into a potato soup. It was good, not really “make again” good, but I didn’t want to give up on new garlic either.

    And thanks for admitting that you too are afraid of your broiler. I am too. I don’t know why. It seems like a crucial foodie step, but the damn thing is intimidating.

  • http://winterskieskitchenaglow.blogspot.com/ Shaun

    Adam ~ Writers like Simon Hopkinson are a boon by proving that less can can often be more. It is nice not to have to slave away to prepare an appetizer that is seasonal and deeply flavoured. A great choice!

    As for the broiler, I didn’t grow up with one in my family oven in New Zealand. When I moved to the US and was confronted with an oven that had broiling capabilities, I had to ask my partner what it a broiler did. Like you, I suppose, he knew what it did but did not have much experience. Try it out. Throw a bit of bread underneath and see how long it takes to become toasted. I used our broiler all the time for gratins, quick-firing peppers, and creme brulees.

  • http://www.mousebouche.blogspot.com Mouse Bouche

    I LOVE roasted garlic in any form. I’m a fan of the aluminum foil method and always add a little sprinkle of kosher salt over the top. I pretty much can’t make a roast anything without throwing some whole cloves of garlic in to roast with it. and goat cheese is the perfect combo. If this could count as a grilled cheese sandwich, it’d be my favorite kind.

    Also due to lack of counter space in my ny apartment I gave up the toaster in favor of my broiler. just as good.

  • http://www.onehealthylifestyle.com Health Guru

    mmmm mmmm!

    Delicious recipe!

    Might I suggest using celery seed instead of salt as a healthier alternative? Check that out next time you make it. I have some other interesting health tips for food available at One Healthy Lifestyle ranging from lemon juice as a salad dressing alternative to yogurt instead of sour cream!

    - Health Guru

  • http://www.onehealthylifestyle.com Health Guru

    mmmm mmmm!

    Delicious recipe!

    Might I suggest using celery seed instead of salt as a healthier alternative? Check that out next time you make it. I have some other interesting health tips for food available at One Healthy Lifestyle ranging from lemon juice as a salad dressing alternative to yogurt instead of sour cream!

    - Health Guru

  • http://www.onehealthylifestyle.com Health Guru

    Apologies on the double (now triple) post!

    All the best (and looking forward to more recipes)

    :)

  • http://www.dixiedining.com.wordpress.com Gary Saunders

    Look me some Beaker — thanks for finally providing him/it with the international exposure and acclaim he/it so richly deserves.

    Also enjoyed your take on Honeycomb. I too have had strange cravings for the cereal of my youth, but more along the lines of Captain Crunch with Crunchberries or Fruity Pebbles. MMMMMMM, fruity!

    Check out my site (www.dixiedining.com) and blog (www.dixiedining.wordpress.com) — perhaps we can share links?

    Keep up the fine work!