Creamy Garlic Sauce with Broccoli
- 2 cups milk, plus more if needed
- 2 head garlic, cloves separated and peeled, plus 4 tbsp sliced garlic (about 6 large cloves)
- 4 bay leaves, preferably fresh
- coarse salt
- 5 tablespoons EVOO
- 1 1/2 - 2 pounds broccoli
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups milk, the whole garlic cloves, bay leaves and 14 tsp. salt to a boil over medium heat. Boil until the liquid is reduced to 1 cup, about 40 minutes. Discard the bay leaves. Pour into a sieve set over a bowl and use a wooden spoon or spatula to press the soft garlic through. Whisk the sauce until smooth, then whisk in 14 cup EVOO; season with salt.
Meanwhile, separate the broccoli into 2- to 3-inch florets on their stems; trim the stems to about 4 inches long. Peel the tough skin from the stems, then halve each lengthwise.
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the sliced garlic in the remaining 1 tbsp. EVOO, stirring, until lightly browned, 5 minutes. Add the broccoli; sprinkle with the crushed red pepper and 14 tsp. salt. Pour in 12 cup water; cover and cook, tossing occasionally, for 10 minutes, adding 14 cup water at a time as needed if the broccoli sears (it should be tender but still bright, and the pan should be dry). Uncover and remove the pan from the heat.
To serve, reheat the garlic sauce. Thin with more milk if desired. Serve the broccoli in a pool of the sauce.