You Should Sprinkle Some MSG on the Garlic Bread
“Garlic bread” can mean a lot of different things (all is well, of course). The first iteration I was presented was white toast with country crocodile and garlic salt, served alongside what my grandparents called “Italian spaghetti.” (You may ask, what other spaghetti is there? Chicken spaghetti , which rules more completely than it should).
Now I make garlic bread with two parts of garlic (a whole head of soft fried stuff with a couple of finely chopped raw cloves) and usually make it on a French batard (open crumb cannot be whipped!), But I will never give up the good old situation with margarine, toast , garlic and salt. (This is really delicious!)
But no matter what delicious garlic bread I make, a little MSG will often end up in there. It’s not really “necessary,” but it gives the bread an edge. MSG is literally a crystal made up of the two flavors you want from garlic bread – salty (thanks to sodium) and umami (thanks to glutamate). Just shake a small crystal or two to accentuate the flavor that’s already there and provide a super-sweet base.
It tastes like garlic bread, but to a greater extent. This is especially useful if you don’t have time to toast or otherwise brown the garlic, but still want to give your bread a deep, almost meaty flavor.
Again, you don’t need much. You want MSG to complement the garlic, not distract it. Two cocktails or one very small pinch per piece of bread is enough. If you don’t like the look of the thin rod crystals on garlic bread, simply mix them with butter (or a rustic pitcher) beforehand to hide them.