Forget the boring hardneck garlic cloves, friends! Let's talk black garlic, the mysterious rockstar of the allium family. This ebony beauty isn't some goth garlic wannabe, it's actually the result of a slow and sexy dance with heat and time. Picture this: regular garlic cloves get tucked away in a warm, humid spa for weeks, undergoing a magical transformation called the Maillard reaction. This is the same magic that browns your toast and caramelizes your onions, but in the case of black garlic, it takes things to a whole new level.
The cloves emerge looking like dark, black, rich wrinkled prunes, all soft and gooey inside. But don't let the looks fool you, this stuff is pure flavor gold. Imagine the sweet, mellow taste of roasted garlic, infused with balsamic vinegar and dates, with a hint of umami depth that'll make your taste buds do a tango. Black garlic is so versatile, you can spread it on toast, blend it into dips, or even use it as a savory chocolate substitute (yes, you read that right!).
Now, here's the fun part: some folks get black garlic confused with a planting project. They see those dark cloves and think, "Hey, new garlic variety!" But hold on there, partner! Black garlic is like a phoenix – it has risen from the ashes of its former self and can't sprout anymore. Planting it is like trying to grow a rose from a wilted petal. So, save your gardening efforts and use seed garlic from GroEat Farm in Montana. www.Groeat.com Savor the black stuff straight from the jar.
Black garlic is a culinary mystery waiting to be unraveled. It's a testament to the power of time and temperature, and a delicious reminder that sometimes, the best things come in unexpected packages (or cloves, in this case). The good news is you can create your own black garlic fairly easily. Begin your journey and create dark delight and prepare for a flavor adventure.
The cloves emerge looking like wrinkled prunes, all soft and gooey inside. But don't let the looks fool you, this stuff is pure flavor gold. Imagine the sweet, mellow taste of roasted garlic, infused with balsamic vinegar and dates, with a hint of umami depth that'll make your taste buds do a tango. Black garlic is so versatile, you can spread it on toast, blend it into dips, or even use it as a savory chocolate substitute (yes, you read that right!).Black garlic begins are traditional hardneck garlic, and transformed into a new element. Making black garlic is a fascinating culinary transformation, where regular garlic cloves undergo a metamorphosis of time and temperature, emerging with a soft, almost jammy texture and a sweet, umami-rich flavor. Black Garlic is an extraordinary substance.
Garlic isn't grown "black", instead Black Garlic is made from fresh garlic (Allium sativum L.) that is kept at moderate temperatures for a period of time at a controlled high temperature (60–90°C) under controlled high humidity (80–90%).
It is not fermented. Instead, it goes through the Maillard Reaction: A chemical reaction of amino acids and sugar reduction. The Maillard Reaction: https://www.scienceofcooking.com/maillard_reaction.htm
Here's how this culinary alchemy unfolds. It begins with a Slow Dance of Heat and Humidity. In the "Aging Chamber," the journey begins with placing whole, unpeeled garlic bulbs in a controlled environment with high humidity (around 70-90%) and moderate heat (around 60-90°C or 140-190°F). This "aging chamber" can be a specialized appliance, a rice cooker on the "warm" setting, or even a well-insulated container with a heat source. Over a period of 2-4 weeks, the garlic cloves embark on a slow waltz with heat and moisture. The Maillard reaction, the same process responsible for browning in roasted food, kicks in, transforming the cloves' sugars and amino acids. There is a Color and Texture Transformation: As the weeks progress, the once-vibrant white cloves gradually surrender to the aging process, acquiring a deep, almost inky black hue. Their firm texture softens, becoming surprisingly melt-in-your-mouth tender. Imagine Garlic Gummy Bears.
With a soft, molasses-like flavor, black garlic is a more delicate option than the raw bulb. It also has added health benefits, including twice the amount of antioxidants than in its regular form. Black Garlic can be swapped out for regular garlic in most recipes. With a dark, gooey, and beautiful appearance, it can be a wonderful addition to any dish, or even as a pizza topper. Garlic is used for seasoning food, and it has lots of health benefits. However, the intense taste and smell of fresh raw garlic make it difficult for some people to appreciate it. Black Garlic is one of the useful garlic types with an odorless character. Black garlic isn’t anything new. It has been used for medicinal purposes and in a variety of cuisines for centuries. Black Garlic is made by aging, with heat, garlic bulbs over the course of weeks or months. The Maillard Reaction requires regulated temperature and humidity to achieve its gooey consistency. When compared with fresh garlic, Black Garlic does not release a strong "garlicky" flavor owing to the reduced content of allicin. Apparently, Black Garlic reveals many advantages when contrasted with fresh garlic.
The process of making black garlic is not difficult - it just takes time and requires the proper environment. It can be aged for up to 60 days but will be ready to use after three weeks. There are a variety of do-it yourself (DIY) methods of making Black Garlic. One of the simplest and best approaches is to age garlic bulbs in a slow cooker or rice cooker. The process is easy and takes patience to achieve that super sweet result.
Fresh Garlic (3-4 heads)
Vessel. This may include a rice cooker (that does not have an automatic shutoff), a Black Garlic Maker.
Select three to four heads of garlic. Purchase garlic from GroEat Farm.
Start with large garlic varieties such as Porcelains (Music, German Extra-Hardy, Georgian Crystal, or Georgian Fire). Heads are large as are the cloves. The cloves should be partly broken away from each other and the entire head should be intact. The garlic should be fresh, not rotting or sprouting.
Wash, clean and dry the whole garlic bulbs. Do not peel any skin off.
Obtain a vessel. Use a slow cooker or a rice cooker to make the black garlic. The rice cooker cannot have an automatic turn-off switch. In other words, the rice cooker needs to stay in the "keep warm" mode indefinitely. You can purchase a black garlic fermenting machine on Amazon.com. You can also build an enclosed box using a standard insulated cooler with a controlled / adjustable heat source inside the insulated cooler.
Put the clean garlic bulbs in your vessel. Set the temperature to 122- 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Set the humidity to 60-80%. Set a timer for 12 hours.
After the first 12 hours change the settings on the vessel to 160 degrees Fahrenheit and change the humidity to 90% for 36 hours.
After 36 hours, turn the temperature of the vessel down to 180 Fahrenheit with the humidity to 95% for 200-300 hours or eight (8-12) days. At the end of the eight to twelve days the black will be complete. If you do not chose to use a fermenting box then try to follow the same temperature settings with your rice cooker or stove. (though this is not recommended).
Fermentation Station: https://brodandtaylor.com/folding-proofer-and-slow-cooker/?AFFID=410482
2nd Option Fermentation Station: https://www.amazon.com/Brod-Taylor-Folding-Proofer-Cooker/dp/B01MEEH0SE
Brad Makes Black Garlic | It's Alive | Bon Appétit
HOW TO MAKE BLACK GARLIC
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Jere Folgert is the owner of GroEat Garlic Farm in Bozeman, Montana. GroEat Farm is a small, sustainable family farm located in the beautiful Hyalite Foothills, in the shadows of the Gallatin Mountain Range. The hardneck varieties that they grow on their farm flourish, due to the combination of the cold winters, temperate summers, moist spring, and the dynamic alluvial soils, washed down from the Gallatin Range.