A jar of garlic confit is a great staple to have in your fridge. Perfect for blending through dips, dressings, topping, salads or a simple pasta sauce, make extra-garlicky hummus or an unctuous garlic pesto.Take the time to make up a huge batch and it lasts for ages. It's also really versatile – spread it on crusty bread, blend through dips, dressings and pasta sauces or fold through mashed potato. The options are endless, and as a bonus by-product you are left with a delicious garlic-flavoured oil once you've finished.
Try experimenting with different flavourings; woody herbs such as rosemary or thyme, spices such as peppercorns, star anise, fennel seeds or dried chilli, or even strips of lemon zest all add bags more flavour to both the cloves and the oil.
The ingredients here should be enough to fill a 300–400ml jar, but it does depend on the size of your cloves. Feel free to scale up or down the recipe to suit your requirements.
Like any confit, garlic confit consists of roasting garlic in generous amounts of fat (in this case extra virgin olive oil) at low heats until it’s tender and lightly browned. Once ready, the garlic is soft, sweet, rich, and flavorful without raw garlic bitterness. In fact, in many ways, confit garlic is very similar to roasted garlic cloves. However, traditional roasted garlic can lead to uneven cooking and can take longer to achieve similar results.
Simmer the cloves with dried red chillies and fresh thyme
in olive oil until tender, then packs them in the oil.
Mash the garlic confit in butter and spread it on bread
3 heads of garlic, cloves peeled (2 cups)
6 thyme sprigs
3 small bay leaves
3 dried red chillies
2 cups pure olive oil
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan
and simmer over low heat until the garlic is tender and lightly browned,
about 30 minutes. Let cool.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the garlic, herbs and chillies to a sterilised jar.
Pour the cooking oil on top, seal and refrigerate for up to 4 months.