I can’t think of many things better than roasted garlic, except maybe smoked garlic. You get the subtle sweetness of roasting plus the added layer of smokiness. I have seen smoked garlic in the “gourmet”section of my grocery store but it is awfully way more expensive that doing it yourself. Smoking the garlic really takes no longer than roasting it in the oven but adds that great smokey flavor. Also smoked garlic can keep for a month, so when you smoke the garlic do a couple at a time and you will have it on hand for other recipes.
Smoking the garlic is not as scary as it might sound. Use what ever smoking method you like. For a look at different smoking methods follow the link to an earlier post Smoking Methods. Get your smoking vessel up to 180. While waiting for the smoker to come up to heat cut the top off a bulb of garlic, place the garlic on a sheet of aluminum foil and drizzle with olive oil and a dash of sea salt.
Twist the top of the foil closed then place in the smoker close the lid and let the smoker do the work. If you’re looking you’re not cooking.
After the garlic has been in the smoker for the first hour it’s time to get the mashed potatoes ready. Take 2 lbs of Yukon Gold potatoes peeled and quartered. Place in a large pot and cover with water add salt and bring to a boil. Let the potatoes boil until fork tender. Strain the potatoes and return to the pot. This will probably be about the time the garlic is ready to come off the smoker. Open the foil and let the garlic cool a bit or else you will have molten hot garlic paste stuck to your fingers.
I begin to mash the potatoes before I add the garlic. Take the bulb of garlic and if it is still to hot to handle run your hands under cold water before handling the garlic. Squeeze the garlic into the potatoes and mash.
Depending on our mood we sometimes do this by hand if we want a more rustic mashed potato or with a hand mixer if we want silky whipped potatoes. While you are mashing them add milk and butter to keep them smooth and creamy. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve with butter and gravy. I personally love this with all types of gravy from chick, turkey, pork and beef or even white sausage gravy.