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The best garlic bread ever!

O.K., let's see your best, Chowhounds! How do you make your best garlic bread? What kind of bread do you use, fresh or some sort of dried garlic, other ingredients such as oregano, parsley, parmesan, red pepper flakes, etc........Do you wrap it in foil or let it get toasty? Do you do the loaf in one piece or slice it?

Garlic bread can be simple or complex, delicious or ho-hum...tell me how you achieve the best version!

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  1. 1) good quality cultured butter
    2) garlic through the press- 1 clove per 2 TBs butter, approximately
    3) finely chopped parsley, lots
    4) good sea salt, healthy pinches

    mash together, slather on italian loaf that's been halved lengthwise, wrap in foil. Bake 350 for about 10 minutes, then take it out of foil, turn it over so garlic butter oozes into both sides, bake another 5.

    eat ravenously, gain 5 lbs. :)

    3 Replies
    1. re: caviar_and_chitlins

      Yum... that might qualify for ultimate...how much butter?

      1. re: sandylc

        lots of butter- it depends on the size of your bread, but you should be able to spread it on pretty generously. This is one of those things I don't measure.

        1. re: sandylc

          My step-MIL likes to use two cubes of butter per loaf, one cube per side. And cheese, lots of shredded parmesan cheese. One night there were four of us for dinner. She cooked two loaves, half a loaf per person. Sat at the dinner table for four hours with half a loaf of garlic Italian bread on my plate. Gaaaahhh.

          Thankfully, she doesn't cook for us anymore. Now we visit, we go out and "argue" over who is paying for dinner.

      2. I think the very best is sliced bread (ours is homemade) grilled over a charcoal fire, then rubbed with fresh garlic, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with Kosher salt. If the grill is not available, we just use a toaster and follow the other steps.

        1 Reply
        1. re: escondido123

          Oh, yeah...that's really good, too!!! So many good ways to combine the same ingredients...that's what makes cooking endlessly interesting.

        2. 1. Roast a few cloves of garlic (or dry steam them)
          2. Puree roasted garlic and mash into softened unsalted butter, along with some minced fresh garlic, a little minced parsley, and sea salt
          3. Slather on Italian loaf bread and bake at 325 til golden brown (15 - 18 min or so)
          4. While loaf is baking, brown a little more butter; simmer a couple of whole cloves of garlic in it. Remove the cloves once the butter is browned and fragrant.
          5. When bread comes out of the oven, drizzle on browned garlic butter and sprinkle with just a flourish of minced parsley and salt.
          (6. A little parmesan to finish is utterly optional.)

          1. Homemade sourdough bread, butter, garlic powder, a little sea salt, Parmesean cheese under broiler.

            1. I recently read a post here about using a thin layer of mayonnaise on top of garlic bread - it sounds like a great idea to me. Mayo forms a sort of crust under the broiler that I think would be quite delicious on garlic bread.

              1. I've never been able to reproduce this one, but at the "Garlic Festival in the Garlic Capital of the World, Gilroy, CA" they take a whole loaf of Sourdough Bread, slice it length wise in fours and then completly submerge each piece in a whole pot of garlic butter. It was the best ever!!!!!

                1 Reply
                1. Garlic bread should be covered in gooey cheese to be exceptionally good. JMHO.
                  A favorite garlic bread was from a restaurant in Greenwich, CT called Manero's. Their original garlic bread and Gorgonzola salad were tops. I guess what made the dining experiences at Manero's so memorable for me was that oftentimes the entire dining room smelled of garlic. Manero's garlic bread was "sopping" with butter, covered with fresh crushed (not chopped IIRC) garlic, lightly seasoned with dried herbs and salt, and smothered with melted low moisture mozzarella cheese.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Cheese Boy

                    The Manero’s in Roslyn, NY (same mini-chain) was our steakhouse when I was a kid and that garlic bread was out of this world. I don’t remember the cheese tho??? But I do remember my Dad had to order a second basket for us every time.
                    Thanks for the great childhood (buttery, garlicky) memory blast Cheese Boy!

                  2. mmmmmm garlic bread.

                    I'm a huge fan of just tons of butter, fresh garlic, and some garlic powder. Something about the combination of both the fresh garlic and the powder do it for me every time. Had it last night in fact!

                    1. Garlic bread is a simple sounding unbelievably tasty side dish.

                      Local Albertsons day old fresh baked daily French bread where get a 18" or so long loaf for 99 cents in a foil lined bag (sometimes cook in but prefer foil). If splurge get a loaf of sourdough french bread if can find a long one. Sometimes make a half-loaf of garlic cheese bread at a time (two 9" half loafs with a top and a bottom).

                      Broken bread alone sometimes with butter is a great way to 'swab the deck' my grandfather called it cleaning his plate getting all the juices to his mouth to savor all the flavors. It is tasty to eat bread pieces (a good crusty soft bread alone no butter) dipped in a plate with a fruity EVOO, basamic vinegar, fresh ground black pepper, and a pinch of good salt.

                      How I make garlic bread is: Using a sharp saturated knife to not smash cut loaf in half making a flat long top and a flat long bottom. Then cut into pieces where only outside crust holds pieces ready to break off. Spread with room temperature salted real butter mixed with lots of fresh garlic (many cloves mashed into mush with garlic press (can cut fine with a knife, mash, then cut fine with a knife again if do not have a good garlic press ... mine do not have to peal garlic just put several cloves in and squirts garlic mush with pressure from little holes out the other side, clean out skins, reload do again), fresh fine chopped parsley, a dusting of a smoked grind of more than ten chili peppers, then as thimes said above sprinkle with granulated garlic powder (granulated - I do not use the harsh strong garlic powder that is a fine dust as find its flavor too intense on bread especially when using fresh garlic also). Put in heavy duty aluminum foil possibly even mist or sprinkle the outside top hard crust with a little water to begin to soften and make steam inside its closed aluminum foil pouch (roll seams so know is not going to open). Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes depending on how like as crust crisps more the longer you leave in, but long enough to steam it. By cooking longer the garlic will have sweeten as well as the crust will crisp. The insides will soften with the garlic flavored seasoned butter. I flip it a three times so all that seasoned melted butter garlic goodness makes it to both the bottom and the top twice with time to soak in. When open tin foil and pull pieces off to eat then cover with fine-grated Pecorino Romano hard strong salty Italian goat cheese from TJs for $6.49 per pound. Once hot don't forget to top with the Pecorino before eating - is good without better with. If cheese does not melt when put on bread put under broiler until cheese just the few seconds it takes to slightly melt (or can use a torch).

                      If needs to be re-heated do in the oven in a foil pouch or under the broiler if watch it close.

                      Yummy! Enjoy.

                      1. The ultimate garlic bread had to have been the garlic bread served at La Griglia, a restaurant in NY's Little Italy that I worked at before graduate school. They would take a loaf of Italian bread, split it, and slather it with a mixture of finely chopped garlic and butter and bake until warm and the butter was melted. Then, the chef would make a parmesan cheese and cream sauce, which he would pour over the warmed, open loaf, sprinkle with a little chopped parsley, and voila. It was so rich that no one could finish it, but it was unbelievably delicious. The ultimate, I believe!

                        1. I slice a loaf of sourdough, melt unsalted butter with a like amount of olive oil, let crushed garlic steep in the mixture, brush it liberally over the bread which fills a half jelly roll pan, grate Romano over it, and broil. Freshly chopped parsley and a twist of black pepper finish it. Salt is optional, depending on what I'll be mopping. My son Sprinkles his with Tony Chachere's. .

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: tim irvine

                            Ah, now this brings up a new subject....would you call this garlic TOAST? As opposed to bread? We like both at our house, and I've been wondering when someone would post a toast recipe.....no rhyme intended!

                            1. re: sandylc

                              As Ron Tater White would say, "Ya got me."

                            2. re: tim irvine

                              tim irvine, good post. Yum. Under the broiler works well especially for individual servings. I cook on heavy duty aluminum foil. Step one is the butter, EVOO, and garlic. Broil half or a few pieces until garlic is cooked enough to be sweet no longer harsh not burned and bread edges start to brown. Take out of oven. Step two is season and cheese, like mine with Pecorino Romano alone in the mix, then broil again enough to just start to melt cheese. Do not walk away checking every 30 seconds or standing there watching when broil especially second time. Watch close as is a good way to start a fire if do not pay attention, best to be ready for one just in case.. Agree after heat when still hot is a great time to hit with fresh herbs & fresh ground pepper right before eat. Gives great fast garlic cheese bread results with slices of bread or half loafs at a time.

                              1. re: smaki

                                Hmmmm...individual servings, a new concept in Garlic bread/toast, like maybe one loaf per person. I have yet to find a recipe I will not devour, even the kind you get in the freezer case. I'd like to build a meal around it with different things in which to mop it, like Bolognese, caponata, fried eggs, or pan sauce from steak au poivre. I even like to sop up any leftover vinaigrette from the bottom of a mixed salad, that is if any garlic bread/toast is left after the salad ourselves (which, at least here, follows the entree).

                            3. Great subject. I start out by making a compound butter (Beurre composé) comprised of European butter, roasted garlic, freshly cracked black pepper and a little fresh basil.

                              I slice some sort of baquette vertically into sections but not all of the way through. Then I rub the compound butter between each slice and convection bake until crusty on the outside and melted on the inside.

                              1 Reply