Wednesday, March 26, 2008


We have a few culinary sayings around our house 1- when in doubt add more cheese. 2- you can never use too much garlic. While many lovers are afraid to use a lot of garlic, it is known for its aphrodisiacal powers! Folklore holds that garlic repels vampires, protects against the Evil Eye, and wards off jealous nymphs said to terrorize pregnant women and engaged maidens. Clay molds and real cloves of garlic were placed in the tomb of king Tut! It also believed to heal many aliments! I don’t know about any of this, I just know that when I want a quick pasta I sauté’ garlic in olive oil add what ever fresh vegetables I have, sprinkle with fresh basil and parmesan cheese. Green beans sautéed in garlic and ginger are one of my most popular dishes. Roasted garlic is a great appetizer. Serve with warm French bread. Make a cocktail party with cheese, bruschetta and olive tampanade, also heavy on garlic. Shrimp Scampi is a no brainier lush with garlic, butter and lemon. I have done many versions of garlic-mashed potatoes, but these are tasty and are great for our non-dairy friends. So whether it heals your heart or nourishes your soul share some garlic with the ones you love!

Roasted Garlic
6 whole heads of garlic
12 teaspoons olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Peel away the outer layers of the garlic bulb skin, leaving the skins of the individual cloves intact. Using a knife cut off 1/4 to a 1/2 inch of the top of cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic. Place the garlic heads in a baking pan. Drizzle a couple teaspoons of olive oil over each head; using your fingers to make sure the garlic head is well coated. Wrap with aluminum foil. Bake for 45 minutes, or until the cloves feel soft when pressed. Allow the garlic to cool enough so you can touch it without burning yourself. Use a small knife cut the skin slightly around each clove. Use a cocktail fork or your fingers to pull or squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins.

Noni’s Olive Tapenade
6 Large Garlic Cloves
2 Cups pitted Kalamata olives or other brine-cured olives
4 anchovy fillets
2 tablespoons drained capers
1teaspoon each fresh chopped rosemary, thyme
3 tablespoons lemon juice
5 tablespoons olive oil
Rinse the olives in cold water. (This makes the tapenade less salty) Finely chop garlic cloves in food processor. Add 1/2 the olives, anchovies, capers, thyme and rosemary. Process until almost smooth. Add the lemon juice. With machine running gradually add olive oil. Blend mixture until smooth. Then coarsely chop the remaining cup of olives and mix in. Season tapenade to taste with pepper. Transfer to small bowl.
Serve with toasted French bread.

6 seeded ripe plum tomatoes, diced
(When in season I love to use the Heirloom)
1 red onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2-cup olive oil
Gently combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Season with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Let stand at room temp for 1 hour before serving
Grilled Garlic Tuna Steaks
6 cloves garlic,chopped
6 scallions with tops, minced
1/3-cup parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons dry vermouth
(Or white wine)
1-teaspoon soy sauce
3 splashes Green Tabasco (or to taste)
4 tuna Steaks, 1/2 to 3/4 inches thick.
Prepare the grill to medium heat. Mix the garlic, scallions, parsley, vermouth, soy sauce and Tabasco. Add the tuna steaks and marinade in the refrigerator for one hour. Grill the tuna steaks 5 inches over the heat for about 8 minutes per side until they are firm to the touch. Remove from grill and serve immediately.

Shrimp Scampi

2 pounds large prawns
8 tablespoons butter
1/2-cup olive oil
8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup basil, finely chopped
1/4 cup oregano, finely chopped
Juice from 3 lemons
Zest from 1 lemon
Splash Triple Sec
Salt and Pepper to taste

Shell and devein prawns; rinse and drain. In a medium skillet melt butter. Add olive oil, garlic, basil, oregano and lemon juice and zest. Sautee for one minute. Add prawns and cook until pink. Add salt and pepper and triple second cook on high untilluquid is reduced to 3/4.Serve over pasta.

Yukon Garlic Mashed Potatoes
1/4-cup olive oil
6-garlic clove, minced
5 Yukon Gold Potatoes
Pour the oil in a medium skillet and heat. Add the garlic and sauté until soft about 3 minutes, set a side. Peel potatoes and cut into 1/4-inch chunks. Place chunks into a medium saucepan filled with cold water. Add 2 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until tender. Drain over a bowl reserving liquid. Transfer potatoes to a medium bowl. Using a whisk mash potatoes adding reserved cooking liquid until smooth. Add the sautéed garlic and season with salt and pepper.

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