Cheesy Garlic Bread

I'm headed to France tonight, y'all! Whoo! And what better way to celebrate my departure from America than a cheese laden bread, am I right? Jokes! Melted cheese-covered carbs is a v. American thing and it's a nice way to remember my country of birth while I'm abroad.

Anyway, this is one of my favorite ways to make garlic bread. I use a garlic infused butter which imparts a lovely garlicky fragrance without being overpowering. This isn't the type of garlic bread that will leave your breath stonky stinky stanky. I swear, even vampires could enjoy this without bursting into flames (or whatever happens when vamps eat garlic).
1 loaf of bread (Italian, ciabatta, baguette, sourdough loaf, boule)
¼ cup butter or olive oil
2 cloves garlic, smashed
¼ teaspoon crushed pepper flakes (optional)
½ cup grated melting cheese (mozzarella, havarti, gruyere, cheddar, gouda, jack, colby, muenster, fontina)

Start by slicing open your bread using a serrated knife. Why a serrated knife? Because serrated knives can cut through softer foods without completely destroying them. How? Well, serrated knives have that zig-zag edge so there are several points that are sawing at the same time, unlike a normal chef's knife which had one sharp edge which is trying to push itself into the food. Serrated knives are great for cutting bread and cakes as well as softer produce, like tomatoes.
Next, add your butter, smashed garlic cloves, and crushed red pepper flakes to a saucepan. If you're not into spice, you can omit the pepper. Heat the pot up on the stove until the butter is melted and the garlic starts to sizzle. If you're keen on a stronger garlic flavor, you can mince the garlic before you pop it on the stove. It's up to you.
Spread the butter onto the bread and then sprinkle generously with cheese.
Pop your bread onto a sheet pan and toss in a 400F oven for a few minutes, just until the cheese melts and the edges start to go brown.
Cut the bread into individual-sized pieces and serve while it's still warm. I used my pastry cutter to cut up the loaf, which made it super easy.
The bread is crisp, cheesy, buttery, and has an essence of garlic without being too overpowering. Oh, and let's not forget, it's also got a little bit of heat from the crushed pepper flakes. This makes a delicious side dish but this could also make an amazing base for a sandwich. Imagine? Throwing some ham, salami, and capicola on here? Ooh, or some chicken cutlets (or eggplant) with marinara sauce and parmesan cheese! Or some roasted vegetables and a bit of pesto. Yummy, man. Super yummy.
Here's the recipe page: