Cook's Illustrated & Cook's Country have created a technique that results in crispy bread with just enough garlic flavor. Here is is:
CRISPY GARLIC BREAD from Cook's Country magazine
Makes 12 slices
Start with a soft Italian bread, not a rustic, crusty loaf. Use a rasp grater or the small holes of a box grater to grate the garlic.
12 Tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
4 garlic cloves, grated (see note) or minced
1/4 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
12 (1") slices Italian bread (see note)
- MAKE PASTE: Adjust oven rack to middle position, place rimmed baking sheet on rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees. Using fork, beat butter, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper in small bowl until combined. Spread butter mixture evenly over both sides of bread.
- TOAST BREAD: Arrange buttered bread on heated baking sheet and bak3e until golden brown on first side, 8-10 minutes. Flip and bake until golden brown on second side, about 5 minutes. Serve.
CHEESY CHIPOTLE: Add 2 tsp minced chipotle chiles in adobo to the butter mixture in step1. Sprinkle bread with 1 1/2 cups shredded pepper Jack cheese in the last minute of baking.
SPICY PESTO: add 3 Tbsp basil pesto and 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper to butter mixture in step 1.
OLIVE AND THYME: Add 2 Tbsp black olive tapenade and 2 tsp minced fresh thyme to butter mixture in step 1.
CHEDDAR-CHIVE: Add 2 Tbsp minced fresh chives to butter mixture in step 1. Sprinkle bread with 1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese in the last minute of baking.