Thursday, January 3, 2008

Roasted Garlic on Focassia Bread

Roasted Garlic

2 whole garlic heads (bulbs)
2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Peel the outer skin of the garlic only but leave the garlic bulb whole. Slice 1/2 inch of the pointed end of the garlic bulbs. Put the garlic head in a small oven proof dish, garlic roaster, or pan. Pour 1/2 tsp. of olive oil over the top of each bulb and let it sink in between the cloves. Wait two minutes and then repeat with another 1/2 tsp. of olive oil over each bulb.

Cover and bake one hour or until cloves are browned at the exposed end and soft throughout. Remove from oven.

Allow garlic to cool and remove cloves from head as needed. Garlic may be stored in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator for several days. To puree, crush garlic cloves with the flat of a knife.

For the bread I made, I didn't have any extra garlic. I bought crumbled gorgonzola cheese and poured it on top of the bread. Then I melted it in the oven on 250 degrees for a few minutes (not completely melted though). Then I put the roasted garlic on top.

You can also put in on flat bread, or on baguette bread with cream cheese.

Split Pea and Ham Soup

2 C. split peas, rinsed
6 C. cold water
5 C. chicken or vegetable broth
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stock with leaves, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 bay leaf
salt & pepper to taste
dash each of parsley, thyme, marjoram and cayenne pepper
2 C. ham (this is good soup to make after you have a honey baked ham - I used the leftovers from ours and it was really good)
1 potato

*Optional: 1 tsp. sugar, barley

(For the barley, while the peas are simmering, in another pot, cook 1/2 cup of barley with 6 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until most of the water has been absorbed. Drain and rinse barley with cold water. Add to soup.)

Directions: In a large pot add peas with 6 cups of cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for one hour until the split peas are tender (longer if needed).

Add chicken (or vegetable) broth, carrot, potato, celery, onion, garlic, sugar, lemon juice, ham, bay leaf and all spices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for another 1/2 hour or until carrots are soft.

(Note: I didn't add the potato because I thought it was thick enough already. You can also puree the soup in a blender before adding the barley but I didn't.) Yum!