Cookbook Challenge: “The Garlic Lover’s Cookbook” Part 1 & 2

This cookbook has a little bit of everything for everyone and you can get as intensely garlicky as you want. Some of the amounts of garlic per recipe, range from as little as 1/4 teaspoon, all the way up to 40 cloves. When I’ve been asked before what my favorite food is, I have often responded with one word, “garlic”. So, I guess you could say I’m more of a 40 clove type of person, which is why I chose this next recipe, 40 Clove Garlic Chicken . Hooray for garlic!

This dish was tangy and flavorful and felt very indulgent. It calls for leaving the 40 cloves in their skins and baking them until soft, which makes the garlic sweet and smooth tasting. The lemon adds the acidity that balances out any heaviness the garlic may impart. I chose to lightly brown the pieces of chicken, skin-side down, before baking and also added half of a sliced onion.
I really liked this recipe and will continue to make this, or a variation of this, for a long time to come.

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I served the chicken with a second recipe from this cookbook, (“Part 2”), called Garlic Butter Crumb Tomatoes. I picked this particular one because I happened to have some beautiful heirloom tomatoes on hand from Ohana Organic Farm in Puna. They are super flavorful tomatoes and perfect for putting under the broiler as this recipe calls for. I did not use crushed stuffing crumbs, but instead, used panko breadcrumbs seasoned with salt-free seasoning, and I used coconut oil instead of melted butter. This dish was so simple to make and pretty enough to serve as a quick vegetarian appetizer in the future.

After giving it some thought, I have decided not to keep this cookbook. It’s my feeling that if you’re going to call yourself the “Garlic Lovers” anything, it needs to smack me in the face just like the scent of raw garlic. Many of the dishes actually lack a substantial amount of garlic for my taste, and it was strange to think that some of them were actually entered into a garlic cooking competition. This cookbook will be donated to my friend who also appreciates garlic and she can make better use of it than me.

*As for this particular cookbook:

This cookbook is as much of a celebration of Gilroy, California as the garlic itself. The few photos provided in the book are of the annual garlic festival that has been held there for the past forty years. The beginning of the book tells a little about the history of garlic and it’s uses. Most recipes name the person who entered it in the cooking competition as well as any anecdotal and interesting information about the recipe, i.e., family history, origins, etc. As I’ve stated before, I am not a fan of cookbooks without any pictures of the final product, and this falls into that category. The book has some great inspirational recipes, but has plenty of redundancies, such as five different recipes for garlic bread, all using French bread, butter and garlic, with no huge difference between them. The contest winning recipes are in a chapter all of their own, and in my opinion, deserve to be placed at the front of the book, not the back, as they are the best quality. This book is for the true garlic fan, and because of the homespun-take on most of the recipes, it may be a nice addition to have on hand. 

“The Garlic Lovers’ Cookbook” from Gilroy, the Garlic Capital of the World.

 

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