Ruggero's Bread and Garlic Soup
Posted by GayleL at anonymous May 18, 2001
Source: You Asked For It - May 10 2001 - sun-sentinel.com
Chef/owner John Albanese of Ruggero's Ristorante, Fort Lauderdale, was happy to share the recipe for Bread and Garlic Soup. All garlic lovers will want to make this often. It is that good.
The recipe calls for 40 cloves of garlic, which may sound like overkill, but here the garlic is simmered in olive oil until it is soft and golden brown. At this stage, it is sweet, mellow and similar in flavor to roasted garlic. It helps if the garlic cloves are the same size so the cooking time is the same for all. Divide your garlic bulbs into separate cloves. The large outer cloves can be cut in half or quarters to equal the size of the smaller inner ones. The selection and peeling of the garlic can be done several hours ahead or even the day before. Place the peeled garlic in a nonreactive bowl and drizzle the olive oil called for over it. Toss to coat, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to cook it.
The French baguette cubes can also be done ahead, since they need to dry out in the oven for several hours. A note here: The original recipe calls for the bread cubes to be placed in a large soup terrine with the soup stock poured over. However, I found it easier to place the number of cubes per serving in individual soup bowls and divide the hot soup stock among them.
The recipe serves six. I had four tasters. I put the remaining bread cubes and stock in a saucepan, refrigerated it for two days, and when I reheated it for lunch, it was as flavorful as the day it was made. It was a bit thicker since the bread had completely disintegrated, but it was consumed with gusto.