If you’re looking for a quick way to bring strong flavor to a wide variety of dishes, this roasted garlic compound butter is for you. Easy to put together and full of flavor, this is one tool you need in your arsenal.
Anyone who has ever entertained at home with a full slate of small plates knows how time consuming it can be. You’re juggling multiple dishes all while trying to build flavor (and not burn anything). That’s where compound butter comes in, making things easier and tastier.
A compound butter is simple – mix some ingredients with a softened stick of butter, roll into a log, chill, and you’re good to go. You can cut off a knob of butter and use it whenever you want to add both fat and flavor to a dish. Perfect in the fridge with lasting power in the freezer, compound butter can be a real time saver.
This post is the start of a new series of posts that I’ll be adding to the blog every now and then that focus on a single ingredient – whether that be a compound butter, a sauce, or something similar – that you can add to your culinary arsenal. It’s up to you to pair these with your food however you’d like, although I’ll be adding my own suggestions along the way.
The compound butter that I’ve decided to put together only has two additional ingredients – roasted garlic and salt. Don’t be fooled by the simplicity though, as this butter packs a ton of flavor in one small coin. Roasting the garlic adds some deeper roasted and sweet notes to the strong flavor of garlic. The salt simply amplifies the flavor of both the butter and garlic.
If you’ve never made roasted garlic before, this compound butter is the perfect recipe for trying it out. It is very easy, very hands-off, and makes your entire kitchen smell like garlic deliciousness. If you love garlic, you’re going to be in for an hour of pure food-porn-esq bliss. And that’s before you even eat anything. You’re welcome.
I have a few suggestions for this roasted garlic compound butter that will help you to add flavor in no time.
- Cut off a coin of butter and use it to flavor a simple sauté of vegetables. Add in a little olive oil to elevate the smoke point of the butter, keeping it from browning too far/burning in the pan.
- If you’re making a pan sauce, use the compound butter in place of regular butter for thickening and finishing the sauce. Keep in mind that the butter has some added salt into it when you’re seasoning the sauce early on.
- If you love yourself – and only if you truly love yourself and want to make yourself happy – finish off a grilled or seared steak with a coin of the compound butter. Simply place it on top and let the heat melt the butter as you let the steak rest. Throw it under the broiler for a quick second if the butter needs a little bit of help.
- One Head of Garlic
- Olive Oil
- 1/4 tsp Salt, Plus Pinch
- One Stick of Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature
- 1. Preheat oven to 400 F
- 2. Remove as much of the outer skin of the garlic head as possible while still keeping cloves together.
- 3. Chop off the top of the head of garlic so that the cloves are exposed.
- 4. Drizzle the top of the head of garlic with olive oil.
- 5. Season with Salt and Pepper.
- 6. Wrap the garlic in tin foil and place directly on a rack set to the middle of the oven.
- 7. Cook for 50 minutes and then check the garlic. Is it brown and roasted? Take it out. If it isn't, put in for another 7-8 minutes and check again. Repeat until garlic is as roasted as you prefer.
- 1. In a medium-sized bowl, beat butter by hand (with wooden spoon or spatula) until completely softened.
- 2. Remove garlic cloves from head of roasted garlic and add to the bowl. If the garlic still has a little spring to it, crush and pull apart with your fingers.
- 3. Add 1/4 tsp of salt and stir to combine.
- 4. Lay out a large sheet of plastic wrap and add the butter, in a horizontal line, to the center of the plastic.
- 5. Fold the plastic over the butter and use your hands to work into a cylinder/log. Wrap tightly, twist the ends, and place in the fridge to set. This can be kept in the freezer for at least a few weeks.