Roasting a bunch of heads of garlic at once is great (and will keep for a while in the fridge) but I wanted to just make a small portion for one meal and since I knew it was destined for mashed potatoes, I wanted to try to poach the garlic in butter. I used a small ramekin and a toaster-oven for this, because I figured it would be more efficient than the oven – and I’m glad I did, the glass front allowed me to keep an eye on it. And unlike a stove-top and small pan, I could open the door and cool it down quick if it got too hot.
1 small ramekin (heat-proof)
few crushed garlic cloves – I used like, 7
butter – enough to fully cover the garlic
The reason this is garlic ghee and not clarified butter is that with this process I boiled out the water but kept the milk solids, which impart a mildly nutty note. Butter is about 15-20% water, mostly fat and a tiny bit of milk-solids. That scum that accumulates on the top when cooking butter this way can be collected with a small, trusty two-pronged fork and re-constituted into the mix.
By employing an infrared surface thermometer I was able to maintain ~250-300º pretty consistently, and I would rotate the dish every 10-15 minutes, for a total cook-time of about 45 minutes. Long enough to fully render the garlic cloves but not so long that anything burned. Dark brown has flavor, black is carbon.