For the serious garlic fan, garlic butter is a culinary necessity. It offers a simple way to add a dose of garlicky flavour to many dishes and spares you the trouble of needing to peel and chop garlic each time you want its flavour. Purchasing garlic butter from the store may be less than satisfactory, however. It may have too much or not enough garlic for your personal taste, or the cost may be significantly more than the individual prices of butter and garlic.
Remove the butter from the refrigerator and allow it to warm to room temperature. This makes it soft enough to easily mix with your garlic.
Peel two medium cloves of garlic, and then mince them very finely. If you wish, you can even crush them with a mortar and pestle to make a finer paste. For a milder, sweeter taste, use roasted garlic instead.
Place the room-temperature butter into a bowl large enough to hold it easily. Add the finely minced garlic. Mash the butter and garlic together with a fork until well-blended. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to one week.
If you want a softer, more spreadable garlic butter, add olive oil as you mash the garlic and butter together. Use up to equal parts oil and butter if you wish. If desired, you can also add a splash of lemon juice.
For extra flavour, incorporate herbs and spices into your garlic butter. Chives, parsley, paprika, basil and oregano all work well to enhance the flavour of this simple creation.