Easy Garlic Confit
This creamy spreadable garlic condiment is irresistible and easy to make. The word confit is a French word that describes more of a technique then a recipe. It’s the process of preserving food and in this case we are preserving garlic. Fresh organic and delicious home grown garlic. We had an abundance of it even after giving much of it away. The garlic is peeled and then gently poached in olive oil (although any oil or fat can be used). There’s no rules for which oil to use but olive oil is a good option - it adds a pleasant, complementary flavour. The process caramelizes the cloves making them buttery and smooth and also concentrates their sweetness while infusing them with the oil you poach them in.
Once it’s poached and ready to jar, the garlic and oil MUUST be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Red flags usually go up when you mention Garlic-in-oil and the risk of botulism - a condition caused by toxins from bacteria. The best way to steer clear of any risk of it is to make sure you store your confit in the refrigerator. It must not be stored on the counter. The lower temperatures in the fridge will slow down any toxins from forming. And when you use it remember to always dip into it with a clean spoon - no double dipping please.
The garlic confit will keep well in the fridge for up to two weeks. Some recipes say it can last for up to 3-4 months but I wouldn’t risk it personally. This batch goes pretty quickly so I just whip up a new batch when I need to. It’s easy so you don’t have to make a huge batch to last you. It’s simple enough to make as you need it. The oil will harden being in the fridge but you can scoop it out and use it for sautéing or use it in dressings adding so match flavour to whatever you add it to. It liquifies pretty quickly at room temperature.
The garlic is buttery and soft and can be used in pretty much anything. You don’t even have to chop it - you can just mash it and add it to sauces, hummus, pasta, marinades and so much more. I love to mash into softened butter and make garlic butter out of it. It’s so creamy and soft and not as pungent as fresh garlic. It has a sweet and addictive flavour and can easily be eaten by the clove. I love it smeared on a crusty baguette or toast. It’s a great way to add some mild garlicky flavour to just about anything. You can also add even more flavour to your confit if you add fresh or dried herbs and chilies. You can customize each batch according to taste. The oil gets infused with the flavourings as does the garlic. You will be addicted to making this and having it stocked in your fridge. It’s a must have condiment - and the perfect diy preserving project that requires no fancy equipment with maximum reward.
Servings: Makes approx. 2 cups
- 3 heads of garlic, cloves peeled (approx 1 cup of peeled cloves)
- 2 cups (or more) olive oil
Alternative add-ins (flavorings):
- Dried chilies for heat
- Bay leaf
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan and simmer over low heat until the garlic is tender but not overly browned, approx 30 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the garlic, (herbs and chiles if using any) to one or more jars or any kind of sealed container. Pour the cooking oil on top, seal and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.