It's no secret that there are few ingredients I love more than garlic.
In researching garlic soup recipes, I did not realize how popular it is. There are so many variations in so many of the cookbooks I have. I could not decide on one version, so I decided to try two different methods. One, which is very similar to this version by Heidi was very delicious ...... but this version I'm sharing today, which turned out to be a hybrid of several recipes, was more what I was looking for. Velvety smooth, and just enough of a garlic flavor to satisfy my craving but won't scare my friends away.
This is a quick and easy soup that you can easily make for yourself, or your family, or it would also make a perfect starter for a dinner party. It's done in one pot (if you don't count the croutons) and the most labor-intensive part is peeling the garlic. But don't worry, I googled "how to peel a lot of garlic at once" <--- for you, and found a great shortcut.
Although, if you are weird like me and you actually like the smell of garlic on your hands, then you can do it the old fashioned way, by smashing the cloves one by one. I actually find this kind of prep work therapeutic.
Just in case you don't love the smell of garlic on your hands, but you do want to peel each and every clove, I also googled "how to get the garlic smell off your hands" <--- for you. (I figured I probably needed this info as well, in case I want to make this soup and then have people over that might not appreciate my garlic hands.)
Another thing I learned when reading up on garlic soup, is that it has serious medicinal properties. Just like chicken soup, garlic soup meant to be a cure-all.
I thought of calling this recipe: 40 cloves of garlic soup, because you actually use about 40 cloves of garlic. It is the main ingredient and it certainly does shine through, but you'll see I added in a few other goodies to balance out the flavors and give it a little depth.
The reduced wine in this soup really adds a whole other special layer of flavor, but if for some reason you do not want use wine in this soup, then you could certainly substitute with mirin (an asian rice cooking wine) or vegetable broth. Mirin will give you a slightly sweeter outcome, and the broth slightly more savory. The croutons are optional as well if you want to keep this simple. The croutons are there to make it more fancy and filling, but this soup certainly has the ability to stand on it's own.