Ariane loves this trick, and it’s one of her little secrets in the kitchen. Since she always has duck fat in the freezer (an admirable habit), it’s easy to whip it up anytime.
Make yourself some simple garlic confit to keep in the refrigerator. The easy 2-ingredient recipe provides soft, fragrant cloves of garlic, perfect for potatoes, bread, pasta, or pizza.
After a little bath in hot duck fat, there’s no garlic bite left, just mellow flavor that will complement many dishes. Store garlic cloves in duck fat and they will last quite along while in the refrigerator (not that we would know, the stuff seems to vanish all too quickly!).
2 containers duck fat
3 whole heads garlic, cloves separated and peeled
Melt the duck fat slowly in a small sauce pot over medium-low heat. Add garlic cloves and make sure they are covered with duck fat. Turn heat to the lowest possible flame. Cook garlic until the cloves float and are very soft.
Pour the melted duck fat through a fine-mesh strainer to catch the whole cloves. Place the garlic into a jar with a tight-fitting lid and strain the duck fat into the jar through a layer of cheesecloth to catch any burned bits of garlic.
Check on the progress of garlic cloves. This was a huge batch we made for an event, so feel free to scale up as necessary.
Garlic cloves removed from the pot, draining in a bowl. The best thing about duck fat is that it’s reusable. After it cools, but is still liquid, pour the now garlic-scented duck fat into containers and freeze for later use. Sauté with it, and get an extra nuanced garlic flavor. Just be sure to mark it carefully, so it’s not used accidentally in a recipe where garlic would not be welcome.