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Ahh. . . Gah-lic March 9, 2012

Posted by Toy Lady in Cooking, random stuff, soupe du semaine.
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Have I ever mentioned that we LOVE garlic around here?

PhotobucketWell, we do.  We’ve even planted garlic in the garden (this year’s is up already!).

In fact, when I was a teenager, I routinely ate cloves of raw garlic.  (Mostly, I think, because it drove my mother nuts, but, lest you think I was that kind of teenager, I liked it for its own sake too.)

And then, a few years back, I discovered roasted garlic.  And don’t get me wrong – roasted garlic has a lot going for it.  It’s mild, almost sweet, and it’s got, I don’t know, a kind of caramel-y, roasty thing going on.

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It’s delightful.

But one thing it doesn’t have going for it is that it takes an hour to do.

If I’m going to wait an hour for something, there really needs to be pork involved.  I’m just sayin’.

But then!

Laura over at Hip Pressure Cooking has cracked the code!

She’s figured out how to “roast” garlic in the pressure cooker!

And, now that I have found a “source” for roasted garlic (yes, my pressure cooker) (I love my pressure cooker), once I had easy access to roasted garlic, it was time to revisit Bon Apetit’s recipe for roasted garlic soup.

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It turns out, pressure-roasting the garlic takes EXACTLY the same amount of time under high pressure that soaked cannellini beans take. . . I think we can work with that, don’t you?

And then, add to that the fact that we just happened to have some roasted chicken left from, well, from roasting a chicken a few days prior, and I just knew there had to be a way to bring all those pieces together.

As an aside, I’ve gotta tell you this.

If you haven’t already jumped on the pressure cooker wagon for the beans alone, you’re already missing out.

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But now?

Roasty garlic in five minutes?

Roasted garlic and beans in five minutes?

What are you waiting for?  Your soup could have been done by now!

So here’s what we did – we cooked about half a pound of (soaked) beans and roasted the garlic under high pressure for 5 minutes, then released the pressure, drained the beans,  squoze the garlic out of its skin, and added a wee splash of good olive oil.

Then, right in the same (now empty) pot (without the lid, it’s just a pot, you know), we melted a bit of butter, the cooked a whole onion that had been sliced into 1/4-inch slices with  the leaves from a good-sized sprig of thyme.  Once the onions were softened and translucent, add, oh, a couple more bulbs’ worth of whole garlic cloves, along with the roasted garlic.

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This is garlic soup, you know.

Cook that a couple of minutes, then add a quart of chicken stock, cover and simmer about half an hour, until the garlic is completely tender.

Now for the fun part.

Take about half of the beans you cooked and set aside, and tossed them into the soup.

And then, working in batches (of course!) blend the mixture.  Unless you’re using a stick blender, which would work, but a traditional blender will give you more of a silky-smooth texture.  (If that matters to you.)

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And now, you’re going to add the rest of the beans, along with maybe a cup or so of shredded cooked chicken (if you want) (you don’t have to).

We also added about half a cup of half-and-half before reheating, a bit of salt, and plenty of black pepper.

You can make this ahead, like we did, or you can return it all right back to the pot, heat through, and enjoy with grated parm and fresh bread.

You won’t be sorry you bought that pressure cooker.

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Comments

1. sjbraun - March 9, 2012

Okay, you have almost – ALMOST! – convinced me on the pressure cooker. The beans, yep, and garlic too? I have never roasted garlic in my life, but when you describe it, it sounds (and looks) so good …

Aw, thanks. I honestly don’t know what I’d do, these days, without it! And, of course, there’s always Pot Roast In An Hour. 🙂

I hear that small batches of chicken stock are great, too, in the PC. . .

2. kayatthekeyboard - March 11, 2012

Think you’re about to convince me on the pressure cooker as well. Once I move across town to the house-with-the-big-kitchen, I’ll have room. Am also contemplating whether I want to go up home and fetch my mama’s pressure canner.

Kay, there is very little in this world better than home-canned chicken stock. Just, you know, sayin’.


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