Right now, our tiny Manhattan apartment doesn’t have room for a dinner table (we just squeeze around the coffee table every night), but one day when we do have a table, I have a fantasy of hosting Sunday night pasta dinners, with garlic bread filling the apartment with its delicious aroma. Fun, right? Well, this garlic bread from Clara of Channeling Contessa would be a slam dunk…

The Best Garlic Bread You’ll Ever Have
by Clara Artschwager of Channeling Contessa

I grew up in a strictly homemade garlic bread household. It wasn’t until I was 12 or 13 and eating dinner at a friend’s house that I was even aware there was such a thing as a non-homemade version (they’d pulled a loaf of Pepperidge Farm bread from the freezer). It soon became blatantly clear to me that nothing would ever measure up to my mom’s from-scratch recipe. And considering how easy it is to make, why do it any other way? The keys to this recipe are using fresh garlic (not from a jar!), the best crusty baguette you can find, and being liberal with the garlic salt (that, right there, is my mom’s secret ingredient).

>Recipe: Homemade Garlic Bread
Makes approximately 10 servings

You’ll need:

Fresh crusty baguette
1/4 cup minced fresh garlic
1/3 cup plus 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
½ tbsp. unsalted butter
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp. garlic salt
1/3 cup chopped parsley

Preheat your oven to 400F. Cut your baguette in half, and then cut each half length-wise. (This makes the full loaf easier to manage, and allows you to place a half loaf at each end of the table if you’re entertaining!)

Place your oil and garlic in a medium saucepan. Set heat to medium low and set your timer for five minutes. Watch the pan closely. Around minute three or four, the oil and garlic mixture should begin to fizz and bubble. You want to let it do that, stirring occasionally for one to two minutes, until the garlic is very fragrant. Once you really smell the garlic, remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the butter, black pepper and ¼ teaspoon of the garlic salt.

Separate the mixture among the four halves of baguette. Sprinkle with the remaining garlic salt and parsley. Stack the halves on top of one another, wrap tightly in foil and bake for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, open the oven and peel back the foil slightly (using oven mitts), to expose the top of the bread. Continue to bake for another two to three minutes until the baguettes are hard to the touch and slightly crispy.

Let bread cool for five minutes. Slice each baguette half into five pieces, and enjoy immediately.

Delicious. Thank you, Clara!

P.S. More best recipes, including spaghetti sauce and brussels sprouts.

(Photos and recipe by Clara Artschwager of Channeling Contessa. Thanks to Shoko for helping with this series.)