Garlic Confit with Cracked Pepper and Herbs and Garlic Confit Oil
Published by Clarkson Potter
This is one recipe that I prepare every week (without fail) and use almost every day. Whole garlic cloves, still in their papery skins, simmer away at the barest bubble in extra-virgin olive oil that’s laced with red pepper flakes and cracked black peppercorns, and are finished with some crumbled herbes de Provence. I use the oil to brush on meat, fish, poultry, and vegetables before (and even after) grilling, roasting, or pan-searing. I also serve the garlic-scented oil with the tender nuggets of cooked garlic (still in their skins) in small bowls, at the table. We squeeze out the garlic meat onto slices of crusty bread, drizzle some of the oil on top, and top it off with a light sprinkle of kosher salt.
Total Timeunder 1 hour
Make Ahead RecipeYes
Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian
Equipmentmortar and pestle
Five Ingredients or LessYes
Taste and Texturecreamy, garlicky
Type of DishCondiments
- 2 heads of garlic (or more), broken into individual cloves but not peeled (remove any excess papery skins)
- Extra virgin olive oil as needed
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- ½ rounded teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- Pinch of herbes de Provence, crumbled (optional)
Place the garlic cloves in a 1-quart heavy-bottomed saucepan and add enough olive oil to cover by 1 inch. Crack the peppercorns using a mortar and pestle; or lay the peppercorns on a sturdy work surface, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and give the peppercorns several swift whacks until most are split open. Add the cracked peppercorns and red pepper flakes, if using, to the oil and place the pan over very low heat.
After about 5 minutes you’ll see the oil begin to bubble. Let the oil and garlic simmer gently for 10 to 15 minutes, uncovered. Don’t let the oil simmer too briskly or the garlic might burst (I once found a few cloves clinging to my kitchen ceiling). When the garlic is tender, remove the pan from the stove and add the crumbled herbes de Provence, if using. Let the garlic confit cool and, after you’ve used what you need for that day, store the rest in the refrigerator, in tightly covered containers, to use throughout the week. For best flavor and ease of use, bring the oil to room temperature before using.
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