The Holiday Spirit

The ‘holiday spirit’ is something we gently refer to in our house as that irresistible feeling that occurs early winter season that pushes one to be overly perky. The year the term was given this meaning, my husband had a particularly bad case of it. This consisted of entering Neiman Marcus and purchasing an exorbitant (and very chic) Gucci purse along with a variety of other ‘smaller’ gifts. We don’t roll like that. It was the ‘holiday spirit.’ Shopping, however, is not the only manifestation of this impulse. It is the gift wrapping job gone Martha Stewart – handmade papers, thoughtfully paired dual ribbons and that extra little butterfly to tie it all together. It is the over-decorating of the house, where no inch remains untouched by the magic of ornaments, santa hats, pine cones, glitter, and reindeers. It is going carefully orchestrated holiday cards, christmas carols, sweater parties, and the like.

But back to gift-giving. The ‘holiday spirit’ did not send me to the mall. It pushed me to buy a ridiculous quantity of garlic to make confit for Christmas gifts. Garlic confit in a 4 ounce Ball jar like this one is a perfect treat and a secret weapon in any kitchen. The garlic confit is amazing spread on a baguette, part of garlic mashed potatoes, as a garnish on a dish main course, and in a dressing where both the garlic and the oil work well. Make a label for the jar, and perhaps include the recipe and suggested uses as a holiday card.

Garlic Confit

Ingredients: 1 cup peeled garlic cloves and 2 cups canola oil.

Cut off the root ends of the garlic cloves and discard. Place the cloves small pan and add enough oil to cover them by about one inch. The garlic should all be submerged in oil. Place the saucepan over low-medium heat (use a diffuser if you have gas stove and some extra attention if you have an electric stove).

The garlic should cook gently- small bubbles that do not break at the surface. Adjust the heat if needed and stir about every 5 minutes for a total of 40 minutes or until the garlic is completely tender when pierced with the tip of a knife. Allow to cool in the oil and store in an airtight container.

Place in your preferred jars, label, and gift away. Let the ‘spirit’ take over!

Photography by Jennifer Olson.

Related posts:

  1. Shop Local: Holiday Food Guide
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  • Monet

    I love making homemade gifts during the holiday season. I avoid the mall at all costs! What a great gift to give or receive! Thank you for sharing, sweet friend. Happy weekend!

  • janet@fromcupcakestocaviar

    Interesting! Quite possibly will make this to put in the stockings of my grown kids since they all love to cook. :-) Definitely buzzed :-)

  • Mathur

    Even though I am a vegan, I love your blog. Your passion and commitment to locally grown is commendable.

  • Kellie @ Blackboard Kitchen

    Just found your blog – I am too am a Denverite. This confit sounds amazing. I can only imagine the sweetness of the garlic. What a great little gift to give. Thanks for the recipe!