Oh, for the love of garlic. This recipe was loaded with the stuff, so if you're not a fan, no need to read on.
What I love about this pasta is the sheer amount of garlic - not only roasted, smashed, and dissolved into the sauce - no, it also has chunks of that sweet, roasted bulb throughout as well.
Roasted garlic is such a different animal from its raw counterpoint - it is mellow and sweet, slightly caramelized, and adds such a fantastic buttery flavor to a dish. This recipe uses 2 heads of roasted garlic, so it is full of that toasted, warm flavor that is so much more subtle than raw garlic. The lemon gives a nice contrast, and the salmon plays second fiddle to the other flavors going on.
Salmon Rotini with Roasted Garlic and Lemon
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Cut the heads of garlic in half crosswise and place on a sheet of foil. Drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Fold the foil up and around the garlic, making sure it stays flat, and fold the edges to seal into a tight packet. Roast until soft, about 60 minutes. Let the garlic cool slightly, then squeeze the cloves out of the skin. Mash half of the roasted garlic cloves into a paste with the back of a knife. Set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still al dente, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes. Drain.
Meanwhile, combine the wine and chicken broth in a large, heavy skillet and bring to a simmer. Add the mashed roasted garlic and stir to dissolve. Simmer uncovered for 4 minutes, then add the salmon, cover, and simmer for 4 minutes longer. Remove from the heat and add the remaining whole roasted garlic cloves, the lemon zest and juice, rosemary, and cooked pasta. Stir to combine; add the olive oil, capers, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Stir once more. Serve immediately.