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Garlic Bread--forgot how good it is


zoe b
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We went out to the local old style Italian place last night--Ernie & Dom's --it's not fancy, but the ingredients are honest.

They serve garlic bread with the salad. I don't usually even taste it, since I'm trying to limit simple carbs, but i was hungry, and scarfed some down--it was so delicious--just made from a split Italian roll, but with butter and garlic galore, I think it had a little parmesan on top. I could have just eaten that for dinner. It was crispy on the outside, melty and buttery & garlicky in the center--heavenly.

I used to make garlic bread pretty often when the kids were around--had a great, quick, method--slice the loaf vertically, leaving the bottom crust attached. Melt almost a stick of butter with a lot of chopped garlic , sprinkle a little salt, and pour over the bread, which is cradled in tin foil, which you then wrap it with. Pop it into a hot oven for 5-10 minutes--then serve it up with a big bowl of spaghetti with red sauce.

Well, my eating habits have changed--the thought of pouring a stick of butter over anything--except for baking--makes me pause, but that garlic bread is haunting me--I know i'm going to have to make some again, and soon...

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Mince up some garlic. Melt butter in a small sauce pan. Briefly saute garlic in butter (2 to 3 minutes till soft). Spread garlic butter over bread. Douse with freshly grated parmesan cheese. Cover with chopped Italian parsley and perhaps some snipped chives. Spice with a little S & P. Place one half loaf on top of the other and bake at 350 for 10 to 15 minutes. Make Happy Face and eat.

Kate

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Yeah, what's with these cooks who just rub a clove of garlic onto the cut slices and call that garlic bread?? :laugh:

When I was a kid making the garlic bread was my job on Friday nights. Mom would make a batch of spaghetti sauce and our babysitter (and later my older brother) would cook up the spaghetti for us to eat while the folks went out to dinner (Dad disliked spaghetti, but we kids loved it). Mom would slice the loaf into individual pieces, keeping the bottom crust attached as zoe b describes, and then I'd put a pat of butter and a shake of garlic powder (mom never used anything but that - no actual garlic cloves in our house!) between each slice and wrap the loaf in the foil and the sitter would warm it up in the oven to serve with the spaghetti (and a salad, if the she was really conscientious). Delicious!

I don't eat bread any more, either, but thanks for that nice memory.

Edited because I remembered that Mom actually sliced the bread for me; I was only allowed to use the butter knife then.)

Edited by Special K (log)
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  • 4 weeks later...
When I was a kid making the garlic bread was my job on Friday nights. Mom would make a batch of spaghetti sauce and our babysitter (and later my older brother) would cook up the spaghetti for us to eat while the folks went out to dinner (Dad disliked spaghetti, but we kids loved it). Mom would slice the loaf into individual pieces, keeping the bottom crust attached as zoe b describes, and then I'd put a pat of butter and a shake of garlic powder (mom never used anything but that - no actual garlic cloves in our house!) between each slice and wrap the loaf in the foil and the sitter would warm it up in the oven to serve with the spaghetti (and a salad, if the she was really conscientious). Delicious!

Oh, wow, that brings back memories! My family did the same sort of thing, except we used just plain old white bread from the bag. My job was to make "garlic toast" - I'd toast the bread in the toaster, then nuke some butter with a crushed garlic clove (we always had garlic cloves in the house) in it. When the toast came out of the toaster, I'd spoon the butter, avoiding the garlic clove, over the toast, and cut it into triangles (never squares). One of my first jobs in the kitchen!

Later on when we were first dating, my husband and I would make a split loaf of garlic bread - a baguette, cut down the middle, spread with melted garlic butter, topped with tons of grated mozzarella, and run under the broiler. drool. Oh, to have that metabolism back.

If you want to avoid the garlic pieces on the bread, why not just gently infuse melted butter or olive oil with several smashed (not chopped) cloves of garlic. Fish the cloves out after about five minutes, and use the butter on the bread then? I agree that sometimes, especially if you broil the bread, the garlic pieces are too strong or can burn and taste bitter.

Or you could use garlic powder.

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I'm embarressed to admit this, but here goes. We eat at a Chinese restaurant buffet almost weekly. For years I thought it was hilarious that they had things like pigs in a blanket and garlic bread. Really-you're at a Chinese restaurant so eat the Chinese food! Lately though I've been eating the garlic bread there, its just the frozen type like at the supermarket, but its soooo good.

Cheese - milk's leap toward immortality. Clifton Fadiman

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I almost feel like I should put this in the Hall of Shame thread, but our favorite garlic bread growing up was a French loaf, split in half, then topped with a mixture of cream cheese, butter (about equal parts), lots of minced garlic (though, we did do dehydrated garlic when that's all that was in the house) and parmesan-from-a-can. Then you run it under the broiler til the top's all brown. It was (and still is) delicious!

"Life is a combination of magic and pasta." - Frederico Fellini

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My current version of garlic bread uses garlic confit made with a couple of heads of garlic, separated but not peeled, salt, pepper, and thyme, tossed with olive oil, then baked at 350F in a small covered gratin dish for about a half hour. Cool, pop the garlic cloves out of the peels, and store in a container in the refrigerator.

Then for garlic bread, I just spread that on bread, maybe grate some parmesan or suchlike on top, and toast.

Edited by David A. Goldfarb (log)
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I don't like to have chunks of garlic on the bread still, is there a nicer way to make garlic butter with the garlic more infused?

I lightly toast the bread and then gently rub the garlic clove onto the crust then butter and toast a little more

tracey

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

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And then there's garlic bread with mozzarella cheese...

For me, that means there has to be some tomato sauce - something to cut the fattiness of the cheese.

I keep it simple and like to go straight garlic confit, lightly broiled bread, if I have time. A little bit of salt if needed, but that depends on the bread. Easily spreadable and stores well!

If it's a quick thing, I rub garlic on the crust (after toasting), and do olive oil/parm on the flesh.

Edited by theisenm85 (log)
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And then there's garlic bread with mozzarella cheese...

Growing up our "company fancy" garlic bread was a large "French" loaf sliced crosswise in 2 inch pieces. Each side was smeared with soft margarine, liberally sprinkled with garlic powder, and an American cheese slice was placed between them (torn up so as to conform to the shape of the slice). There may have been a sprinkle of paprika as well. The slices were carefully prodded back into the loaf shape, wrapped in foil and put in the oven to melt. Today I prefer slices from my home made rustic slow risen loaf toasted, just rubbed with raw garlic and drizzled with grassy olive oil. I consider roasted garlic and fresh bread a meal, so that is a whole other story.

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My son and I baked a loaf of bread today.

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It got me thinking: garlic bread! I took a couple of slices and spread them with a crushed-garlic compound butter.

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Also a little Parmesan.

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10 minutes in the toaster oven on 320 F.

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Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

I think I've lost my grounding with respect to garlic bread. Kind of like pizza, I've discovered that there are styles which can be just as good as whatever your own tradition may dictate, but in different ways. I literally can't decide what garlic bread should be.

Actually, I came to like the unlimited garlic breadsticks at, of all places, Fazoli's. But only if they were fresh out of the oven (which is sometimes a tall order). My son was at the time at a high school cross country team member and before meets, it was traditional to have parents host a pasta party to load these boys up with carbs prior to the run the next day. I never hosted one, but I noticed that the 'cool' parents always had Fazoli's breadsticks.

But recently I tried something I had been thinking about for awhile. Instead of using prebaked breadsticks as Fazoli's does, do it from almost fresh. I took some frozen supermarket white bread dough, thawed it, formed it into sticks, and let it proof. Then I brushed it with garlic butter before and after baking.

I thought they would be good, but they were great. Screw Fazoli's prebaked crap forever.

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