As the cloves simmer in the oil, the oil infuses with gentle garlic notes, making the oil as useful and delicious as the cloves themselves. For maximum versatility, I make my garlic confit with canola oil. The flavored canola oil can be used in high-heat recipes, like sauteed green beans and roasted Brussels sprouts, and no-heat recipes, like salad dressings. If you envision strictly low-heat uses, feel free to make your confit with a high-quality olive oil instead. Then sprinkle a saucer of your aromatic olive oil with a flurry of freshly ground pepper and pass it with the dinner rolls.
Garlic confit benefits from a low, slow simmer, which is where the slow cooker shines. However, the garlic cloves must be completely smothered in oil, and if you have a large slow cooker, you could add far more oil than you intend to employ. Here’s where the curious gets creative. Place your garlic and oil in a ceramic baking dish, like a medium-sized ramekin, and then place the baking dish inside the slow cooker. There’s no need to put anything underneath the baking dish; if it goes in the oven, it can go in the slow cooker.