Buttery Garlic Bread Offers Taste Of California

When it comes to a great-tasting accompaniment to pasta and salads, many like to reach for the garlic bread. After all, what could be more delicious or easy to prepare? But this is a case in which the name does not tell the whole story.

Many good cooks know that if you want garlic bread to be really flavorful, you add butter. The butter adds a richness that works especially well with the flavor of lightly toasted fresh garlic.

This version of classic garlic bread highlights several popular California flavors−garlic and sourdough bread, certainly, but also California butter. California is not only the country's leading producer of garlic and the originator of sourdough bread, it is the nation's leading dairy state and produces more rich and creamy butter than any other state.

If you want to make garlic bread even richer, add a sprinkling of your favorite California cheese before toasting the bread. You can use grated Monterey Jack (another tasty product created in California), Cheddar or a grated hard cheese such as Dry Jack.

This buttery garlic bread is great all year. Enjoy it with salads, soup and pasta, or as a way to add some big flavors to a casual meal.

Buttery Gilroy Garlic Bread

(Yield: 4 half-loaves)

1 cup butter

1/2 cup olive oil

4 cloves garlic, sliced

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

2 loaves San Francisco sourdough or sweet French bread

3 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped

In a small saucepan, melt butter; add olive oil and garlic and warm over medium heat for 1 minute. Add black pepper and oregano. Cut loaves in half lengthwise and brush with garlic butter mixture. Sprinkle with parsley and toast on a grill or under a broiler until golden brown. Serve immediately.

Buttery garlic bread is a delicious and versatile accompaniment to a wide range of entrées.

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About The Author, Stacey Moore