It is not often I find something that makes me this excited but Black Garlic has truly made my heart beat a little faster. Black garlic is normal white garlic that has undergone a process that turns it black. The flavour is incredible and is often compared to Balsamic vinegar with notes of bitterness, sweetness and umami. Black garlic is said to be fermented but it is not the fermentation itself that is the cause behind the black colour and the characteristic flavour. It is a process of sugar conversion in the garlic that makes this. I guess that some people wouldn’t agree with the fermentation part but instead refer to the process as a slow roast since you keep the garlic in 60° C / 140° F during the whole process.
The first time I ever heard of black garlic was in this boutique in Basque Country. I immediately fell for the product and decided to bring it home. When you read about all the health benefits of Black Garlic you sure get the impression that you won’t have to eat anything else to stay healthy for the rest of your life. I don’t know about that but what I do know is that I find the taste divine. You can eat it just the way it is with its soft and sticky texture, a little like dried apricots or you can turn it into a paste and use it in casseroles and sauces. It is a great way of adding a deeper flavour to any dish. With its note of umami I find it perfect for vegetarian food where you sometimes want a little extra flavour.
Black garlic is fairly new on the market here in the west. It is only a few years back that it was discovered and developed by the inventor Kim Hung. He also created the company Black Garlic which website you can find in English here and in Swedish here. Although it is fairly new on the market in the western world it has a long and ancient tradition in Asia where it is primarily used as health supplementary food. Many top rated chefs use it this in their restaurants around the world.