Black Garlic

Black Garlic
Sonja_For The Pleasure Of Eating

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Lovely to meet you!

I’m Sonja and “For The Pleasure Of Eating” is my food blog.

Whether you’re looking to shed a few pounds or discover new recipes, my blog is the perfect place to find ideas that impress your family and friends while creating a party in your mouth!

More about me and how I lost weight here.

 

Black Garlic, with its amazing sweet-fruity umami notes, is of the most exciting ingredients you can make very easily yourself, with just patience and a rice cooker. You can use it in a million recipes, just like the fresh version, but it has so much more flavour and depth due to the super slow Maillard reaction that happens when leaving it for weeks on very low heat. Much cheaper than in the supermarket too.

Why You Will Love This

 

The first time I spotted Black Garlic in my local supermarket in Waterford, I was intrigued. I mean, of course the shiny black cloves looked slightly weird, but it was new, so of course I had to try it.

Versatile

What I wasn’t prepared for though, was the flavour explosion in my mouth. Sure, there was a hint of garlic, but so much more! None of the pungent sharpness of fresh garlic was left. Instead hints of fruit, going particularly well with cheese, umami and sweetness, making it an incredible pairing for any meat or mushrooms. Notes similar to good balsamic vinegar, but without the acidity. I could just eat them as they were like tiny snacks, similar to dried fruit with many of the same characteristics.

Essentially, everything you throw it at gets better. I mean it. Even cookies. I’m not kidding you. https://forthepleasureofeating.com/sourdough-oatmeal-white-chocolate-chip-cookies-with-black-garlic/

Adds “Oomph” to Dishes

Similar to its fresh version, you can use it in salad dressing, sauces for meat, compound butter, bread and many more. I think I saw even an ice cream made with it once. It became a trend ingredient in high end restaurants for a reason, adding lots of flavour, lifting up other ingredients, but without overpowering them.

I think my all-time favourite use of it were Burgers with Black Garlic Aioli. https://forthepleasureofeating.com/burger-with-black-garlic-aioli/

Super Easy to Make

All you need is a rice cooker, several bulbs of garlic, unpeeled, clingfilm and tinfoil. And about 40 days of time. That’s not a typo.

Essentially, against all those posts that claim it would be “fermented”, what is happening here is the Maillard reaction (the caramelisation of sugars present on food caused by heat) in extremely slow motion. Which leads to the black colour without any burning, as the sugar in the garlic gets very slowly transformed into caramel. Fermentation however would be bacteria doing the work and generally leading to some sort of bubbly and funky outcome. Think Kombucha or Kimchi or sourdough. There is nothing bubbly or funky about black garlic though. Just little nuggets of concentrated sweetness and flavour.

The Ingredients

 

I gave it away above, but let me repeat:

Garlic Bulbs. The best quality you can find. Please don’t use any old sprouted ones hanging out in your cupboard. About 6-8 max I found is best. I tried more but found that if I place more than one layer in the rice cooker, the top ones don’t get caramelized as well.

Rice cooker or slow cooker. Ideally one you don’t use every day, because this will be tied up for the foreseeable future. I simply bought a cheap one on Amazon just for this.
The important part is, that it has the “keep warm” function, as that’s what we will be using.

Clingfilm and Aluminium foil. Both.

I have seen and tried methods with just tinfoil or even oven roasting bags, and some using no wrapping at all, but none of them got me the consistent and perfect outcome I got by using clingfilm and tinfoil. And I’ve made many batches by now.

The Method

 

Cut off as many small pieces of clingfilm and tinfoil as you have garlic bulbs. Each big enough to wrap one bulb.

Now wrap each bulb first in clingfilm, then tinfoil. I did it by placing the bulb in the middle of a square, then just pulling up the sides and twisting the top.
There. The hard part is done.

Please your neat little parcels in your rice cooker.
Ideally add a sticker to your rice cooker, telling you what day you started your black garlic.

Find a well-ventilated spot near a wall plug in your house. Your house will smell of garlic. Unless you have the luxury of a garage or shed with power plugs. I left mine in the utility room, with the window tipped open.

Leave for about 40 days. Start checking the garlic after 30. If the cloves are shiny, black, and still soft, they are done. If they are still light brown, they need more time. If they are hard and crunchy, you left them too long.

Black Garlic

That’s all there is to it. Enjoy your little black gems in a delicious Cashew Ranch dressing.
Or add them to compound butter to stuff under the skin of a chicken, for the most delicious roast chicken you will ever have.

Or…bake cookies with it and enjoy the freaked out but delighted look on your friends faces, when you tell them they are eating cookies with garlic.

Black Garlic

Storing your Black Garlic

The Black Garlic keeps in a jar in the fridge for several months. Not that I think it’ll last that long. I have a feeling you’ll start a second batch soon.

 

Please comment!

Now I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
Have you tried this? Did you enjoy it?
What other recipes would you like to see?

If you enjoyed this recipe, please share and comment. It helps me a lot.

Black Garlic

Black Garlic

Black Garlic, with its amazing sweet-fruity umami notes, is of the most exciting ingredients you can make very easily yourself, with just patience and a rice cooker. You can use it in a million recipes, just like the fresh version, but it has so much more flavour and depth due to the super slow Maillard reaction that happens when leaving it for weeks on very low heat. Much cheaper than in the supermarket too.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 days
Total Time 40 days 5 minutes
Course condiment, Ingredient
Cuisine Fusion
Servings 20
Calories 1 kcal

Equipment

  • Rice cooker

Ingredients
  

  • 6-8 garlic bulbs
  • Cling film
  • Aluminium foil

Instructions
 

Wrap the Garlic:

  • Cut off as many small pieces of cling film and aluminium foil as you have garlic bulbs. Each should be big enough to wrap one bulb.
  • Take an unpeeled garlic bulb and wrap it first in cling film, ensuring it's covered completely.
  • Next, wrap the garlic bulb in aluminium foil. Place the bulb in the centre of a square of foil and pull up the sides, twisting the top to seal it. Repeat for each bulb.

Cooking:

  • Place the wrapped garlic bulbs in your rice cooker. If you're using a sticker, label the rice cooker with the start date to keep track of the slow Maillard reaction process.
  • Find a well-ventilated spot in your home near a power outlet. Keep in mind that this will emit some garlic smell during the process. A garage or shed with power outlets can be great for this. Leaving them in a utility room with a partially open window is another option.

Slow Maillard Reaction:

  • Leave the garlic bulbs in the rice cooker for about 40 days. Check the garlic after 30 days to monitor the progress.
  • The cloves should transform into shiny, black, and soft bulbs when done. If they're still light brown, they need more time. If they're hard and crunchy, they've been left too long.

Storage and Enjoyment:

  • Once the garlic bulbs have reached the desired consistency, remove them from the rice cooker.
  • Store the black garlic in an airtight container in a cool, dry place until ready to use.
  • Enjoy your homemade black garlic in various recipes, such as Cashew Ranch dressing or any dish that benefits from its unique flavour profile.

Nutrition

Calories: 1kcalCarbohydrates: 0.3gProtein: 0.1gFat: 0.004gSaturated Fat: 0.001gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.002gSodium: 0.2mgPotassium: 4mgFiber: 0.02gSugar: 0.01gVitamin A: 0.1IUVitamin C: 0.3mgCalcium: 2mgIron: 0.02mg
Nutrition Facts
Black Garlic
Amount per Serving
Calories
1
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
0.004
g
0
%
Saturated Fat
 
0.001
g
0
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
0.002
g
Sodium
 
0.2
mg
0
%
Potassium
 
4
mg
0
%
Carbohydrates
 
0.3
g
0
%
Fiber
 
0.02
g
0
%
Sugar
 
0.01
g
0
%
Protein
 
0.1
g
0
%
Vitamin A
 
0.1
IU
0
%
Vitamin C
 
0.3
mg
0
%
Calcium
 
2
mg
0
%
Iron
 
0.02
mg
0
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Black Garlic, Easy, Healthy, vegan, versatile
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