I have great co-workers. One of the reasons I’m so sad to be moving on to my new job is because of them. Last week I brought some duck prosciutto to Lauren. She, in return brought me fresh homegrown vegetables from her garden. Today Anthony, the wonderful Executive Chef of our restaurants, dropped by to randomly gift me this beautiful smoked garlic. I’ve learned so much, culinarily and otherwise from them both, it seemed only appropriate to make something that combined these two gifts in one terrific, warming, fall dish.
What is smoked garlic? I don’t know. I didn’t even know it existed until Anthony dropped this fragrant present on my desk today. All I can tell you about it is that the scent is heavenly. I was taking whiffs off my purse for the rest of the day.
Prior to the gift of garlic, I had been planning to use the squash from Lauren’s garden in a curry squash soup, but the curry flavor would compete with the smokey garlic, so I nixed that. I wanted smoked garlic soup. That was all.
I dropped the squash, chopped, into boiling duck stock, along with a few sprigs of parsley and a few cloves. While that boiled away, filling my kitchen with a gamey, ducky smell, I fought back by sautéing nearly an entire head of smoked garlic with a tiny handful of diced onion. Ahhh, the smell returned to wonderful. I threw the alliums into the pot and left it to simmer for another hour. Then I attacked with my favorite toy, the immersion blender. Sigh, I say, to the beautiful smell of smoked garlic blending, wafting, filling my kitchen with its amazing aroma.