Friday, May 16, 2008

A simple taste of Keller: garlic chips

I saw an interview with Thomas Keller in which he said that he believes most of the people who buy his cookbooks do so more for the desire to feel like they have experienced one of his restaurants in some way than because they actually intend to use the recipes. I am sure that’s true because as much as I love to cook and am often up for a “project” – the recipes in the The French Laundry Cookbook in particular are a little too intimidating. I do love gazing longingly at the beautiful photographs, however, and as I was doing so recently, I discovered that there are quite a few quick recipes for garnishes, powders and chips that, although really just a footnote to the main recipes, are nevertheless interesting and quite doable.

One such recipe that piqued my curiosity is for garlic chips. In the cookbook, it is served as a garnish to a parsley salad served on top of fish. The recipe calls for boiling thin slices of garlic in milk several times to mellow out their flavor, and then frying them to a light golden brown. I’ve made them a couple times, intending to use them as a garnish on top of soup, but neither time did they made it that long without getting eaten! They are really wonderful sprinkled with salt and eaten just like that. It’s a clever and unexpected idea. I still hope to get them on top of soup soon. Luckily they are quick to make and can be created in ~20 minutes when needed. Photographing the chips put me in a black and gray frame of mind. I’ll share with you a few recent photos in that spirit.

Garlic chips (adapted from the The French Laundry Cookbook)

Garlic cloves, peeled
Cold milk
Canola oil for deep frying

Slice the garlic cloves thinly on a mandoline (1/8 inch or thinner). Place the slices in a small saucepan and cover with cold milk. Bring the milk to a boil, then drain the garlic slices in a strainer, discarding the milk. Rinse them under cold water. Return the slices to the pan and repeat the process three times, using fresh milk each time. Pat the garlic slices dry on paper towels.

Heat the oil in a saucepan to 300˚F (an inch or so of oil is sufficient). Fry for 12 to 15 minutes or until chips are a light golden brown (keep in mind they will continue to cook once out of the pan – don’t allow them to get too brown). Drain the garlic chips on paper towels. Can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 1 to 2 days. Use as a garnish or sprinkle with sea salt and snack!

19 comments:

Peter G said...

I agree about his recipes being a little intimidating but you have really done them justice with your pics Sabra. I love this whole black and grey series.

Helen said...

I love the idea of those garlic chips, I'm definitely going to try them. Your photographs are absolutely stunning.

Riana Lagarde said...

Love your fabulous photos, that mint tea one is great with the DOF! wow! plus garlic chips, love those, we have soe fresh new garlic, i definitely have to make some, thanks for the inspiration

larryb said...

The garlic chips sound delicious and your photos continue to be a real treat for my eyes. Thanks!

Jessie Cacciola said...

just found your blog through tastespotting -- it's gorgeous!
- Jessie -

Anonymous said...

LOVE the pics! -Lisa S.

Anonymous said...

Where did you get that fabulous teapot! i must have it!

nkossek.blogspot.com

-nathalie

Jescel said...

gorgeous photos.. garlic chips, i love 'em. It's also very good for fried rice...

zapxpxau said...

Thanks for the garlic chip recipe! Take care.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how you slice those little garlic pods without slicing part of your fingers. Mandolin or not, it seems intimidating. I'll try it since you vouch for it, but I have my doubts. I see no blood in your photo, tho. sudy z

Aran said...

OMG! Love that last photo!

Jj said...

Garlic chips; sounds so good. I wonder if there's a way to bake them instead of fry...think I'll have to check into that! But these looks delicious!

Kate / Kajal said...

Sabra, your photographs are as usual stunning. I love the idea of garlic chips. I 've usually only had the deep fired chopped garlic, but this seems like a wonderful recipe. Specially soaking it in milk to mellow the flavours. Brilliant stuff.

Katy said...

what an awesome idea! i love garlic in just about any form, but i bet this would be just incredible. i'm curious about boiling them in milk too -- i never would have thought of that!

amy said...

Really love the black and gray image - beautiful composition.

skrockodile (sabra) said...

Hi everyone!
Thanks re: the photos : )
Jessie: glad you found me - hope you keep commenting, I love it
zapxpxau: great to see you here!
Sudy: mandoline slicers thankfully have finger guards!
"anonymous" it's my grandmother's (now my aunt's and on loan)
Jescel: that's a neat idea - I didn't think of that!
JJ: probably, although you make / eat very few of them so it's not so bad to fry them.
Hi Kate / Katy / Amy- hope you guys are well.
One last thought on these: I recently bought a little japanese mandoline that slices even thinner than the oxo model I have (which sliced to 1/8 inch, I don't know how thin the japanese one sliced as it's not marked but very very think) - I re-made the chips and they curled like little flowers - very lovely - so the thinner you can slice these, the better.

noobcook said...

This looks AMAZING! Your photography is really inspiring :D

Madam Chow said...

Not only do I have to try this recipe, I MUST know more about that gorgeous teapot in your amazing photo! Please, please tell!

Anonymous said...

i will try it, can i ask you questions. I did make garkic chips but its bitter . how do i remove the bitterness of the garlic. instead of milk wat can we used other than milk. thanks thanks i;m really interested to know more abouy garlic chips. thanks

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