There isn’t much garlic doesn’t go with. Well, except vampires. Though if you want to know why vampires hate garlic, you’ll have to read 'A Comedy of Terrors' when it comes out in July 2012 :-).
So. Garlic doesn’t go with vampires, at least it doesn’t if you’re the vampire and not the walking bottle of yum a vampire tends to look for on a dark and stormy… No. Not on a dark and stormy night. Definitely not on a dark and stormy night.
Cue lightning :-).
But garlic goes with most other things. Well, maybe not trifle. Perhaps. Though…. Hmmmmmm….
No. Not trifle :-).
Still. I was talking about garlic recently somewhere else. And I suggested every kitchen needed a knitting needle. A what? Yes. You heard right.
Every kitchen needs a knitting needle.
So why does every kitchen need a knitting needle? Listen very carefully, young paddy-wack. I shall tell you.
To start with, get some big Portabella mushrooms. When we say ‘big’ here, think about two or three to a plate. A dinner plate. A big dinner plate :-).
Next, take out the mushroom stalks. This is where I’m supposed to say ‘keep them and use them for… (insert something you never get round to doing here)’. I won’t. Eat them. Raw. They’re good. Alright. OK. If you insist. Chop them and mix them with some shredded cheese. Look at the cheese. Decide you don’t like that cheese. Throw it all away .
Then chop up some fresh garlic. Don’t chop it too fine. You’re going to make garlic butter. It’s really, really hard. No, really. It is.
OK. It isn’t. Hard to make, I mean. Just don’t tell anyone. It spoils the mystique :-P. Yes, if you insist. You can use store garlic butter if you want. But chop up some garlic anyway .
Make garlic butter.
What do you mean, how? OK. Get a ramekin. Yes, or a little bowl. But don’t call it a little bowl. Pretend it’s a ramekin. Why? Because I said so, that’s why :-P.
Put some butter in the small bo… in the ramekin. How much? It’s going to thickly cover the frilly sides of your mushrooms. Why do mushrooms have frills? Well, they’re Victorian mushrooms. They’re embarrassed. Yes, that means I don’t know. Or I do know and I don’t care :-PP.
Throw your chopped garlic on the top of the butter. Use a fork to mix it in.
Alright. Yes, I probably should have said ‘let the butter get soft' first. So sue me :-).
Throw on some more garlic. Mix some more with the fork.
Throw on some more… oh. We did that bit.
Now get some tin foil. Make little cups/ boats big enough for the mushroom caps to sit in. Yes. I know. They were big mushrooms. So make big boats :-). The rim of the boat/ cup should come higher than the top of the mushroom that’s going to sit in it.
Yes, you can wear a pirate hat while making the boats if you like.
Yes, or a sailor hat.
No. Not a Stetson. Oh. Alright then. You can wear a Stetson. Yes, I know Stetsons are cool. Will you put the gun away now, please? Pretty please?
On with the motley. Whatever motley may be. Take your mushroom caps. Take your knitting needle. See? You knew a knitting needle was going to come in somewhere, right? Well, it is. It’s going to go in the mushrooms. Push holes through the cap, frill side to skin side, with the knitting needle. Don't worry that the holes seem to close up some.
Cover the frilly side of the mushroom caps with the garlic butter. Make the butter layer thick.
Put the mushroom caps in the tin foil boats.
Heat up the oven. HOT. Put the mushroom boats in.
This is where the magic happens. The secret’s in those little holes you made. The butter starts to melt in the caps - and runs down through the holes. The melting butter cooks and flavours the inside of the caps. The melted butter seeps to the bottom and pools under the caps. The oven’s hot. So the butter’s hot. It cooks/ fries the skin side from the underneath. And remember those bits of garlic you mixed into the butter? They won’t fit. Down the holes. So they sit there on the frills. Cooking.
This next bit is purely optional. You can put the mushroom caps under a hot broiler for a while to brown the garlic a little. But don’t let them burn or scorch. Really. You don’t. Trust me on this.
No, I’m not a doctor. Yes, you can trust me on this anyway. Well, about burnt garlic, at least.
OK. You’re done. Take the caps out of the boats. Throw away the boats and the melted butter, unless you don't want to. I have no idea why you wouldn’t want to throw them away, but the choice is entirely yours :-P. Pat the bases dry. Put them on a plate. If they live that long .
So there you are. Why every kitchen needs a knitting needle. Or at least, why I think it does. Now it’s your turn. What unusual item is in your kitchen, and why?
No. Not that one. I’m probably too young :-).