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Set the oven rack to the center position. Preheat to 400ºF (204ºC).
Peel the white papery skin off the head of garlic, making sure to keep the cloves intact with the root.
Cut about ¼-inch off the top of the head of garlic. If any cloves on the sides do not get cut, carefully use the knife to slice the top off.
Place the garlic in a center of a piece of foil, large enough to completely wrap the garlic.
Drizzle olive oil over the cut cloves and sprinkle with salt if desired.
Tightly wrap the head of garlic in the foil.
If roasting just one head of garlic place in a muffin pan. If roasting multiple heads of garlic in one foil packet, place on a sheet pan.
Roast until garlic is fragrant, lightly browned in color, and tender when pierced with a fork, 40 to 60 minutes. Check garlic at 40 minutes, then every 10 minutes for doneness.
Remove each clove with a small fork or paring knife to dig out the flesh or use your fingers to squeeze out each piece.
Remove the garlic cloves from the root and leave the skin on.
Add garlic cloves to a skillet, turn the heat to medium.
Toast garlic cloves, shaking the pan occasionally until the surface is lightly charred and cloves are soft when squeezed, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Cool completely before peeling.
Use your fingers to peel off the skin. Alternatively, cut the tips off the clove and then use the spine of a small knife to scrape out the flesh.