Introduction: Black garlic, often referred to as "black gold," is a unique culinary ingredient that undergoes a fascinating transformation through a process known as ageing. This article delves into the art of ageing garlic and explores how time and controlled conditions turn ordinary garlic cloves into a prized delicacy.
Getting Started: A key first step is to grown beautiful white garlic. We use a purple hard neck Monaro garlic that grows well in our area. It is that beautiful garlic with white skins and fine purple veins that you see in quality fruit stores. This variety has an ideal sugar content producing beautiful full flavoured black garlic.
Understanding the Process: The transformation of garlic into black garlic involves a slow, natural oxidation process. Although often described as fermentation, which typically involves the action of microorganisms, black garlic is made through a controlled enzymatic reaction. Whole bulbs of garlic are placed in a humid, temperature-controlled environment, typically around 60°C, for an extended period, typically ranging from two to six weeks. This low and consistent heat triggers enzymatic reactions within the garlic, resulting in the gradual caramelization of natural sugars and Maillard reactions that give black garlic its characteristic dark colour, soft texture, and complex flavour profile.
Flavour and Aroma Profile: One of the most intriguing aspects of black garlic is its flavour and aroma. During the ageing process, the pungent and sharp flavours commonly associated with raw garlic mellow and transform into something entirely different. Black garlic offers a unique umami taste with hints of sweetness, tanginess, and even notes of balsamic vinegar and molasses. Its aroma is often described as earthy, with hints of garlic, caramel, and fermented fruits. These flavour and aroma profiles make black garlic a versatile ingredient that can enhance a wide range of dishes.
Culinary Uses: Black garlic's unique flavour profile makes it a prized ingredient in culinary creations. Its sweet, tangy, and umami taste can enhance both savoury and sweet dishes. Black garlic can add flavour in sauces, dressings, marinades, and soups. It can also be mashed and spread onto bread or incorporated into dips and spreads. Additionally, black garlic pairs well with meats, seafood, roasted vegetables, cheese and even desserts like chocolate or ice cream, adding depth and complexity to the overall dish.
Availability and Storage: While black garlic was once relatively uncommon and difficult to find, its popularity has grown, and it can now be purchased in specialty food stores, gourmet markets, or online. When purchasing black garlic, look for plump and soft cloves with a glossy, black exterior. Proper storage is essential to maintain its quality. It is best stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight, and can typically be kept for several years.
Conclusion: The art of ageing garlic into black gold is a remarkable process that transforms the ordinary into something extraordinary. Black garlic's unique flavour, aroma, and potential health benefits make it a sought-after ingredient for culinary enthusiasts and health-conscious individuals alike. Whether you use it to elevate your home-cooked meals or experiment with new and exciting recipes, black garlic is a culinary treasure that showcases the magic of time and transformation.
For us, 2023 is the year of reaching out to fantastic chefs to share our black garlic product range. As part of this, we plan on sending out sample gift packs to whet their appetite. We have been delighted to work with OzStickerPrinting Company to produce an enticing sticker to encourage opening up the box as soon as it arrives. We went with a byline "Great Taste is in Your Hands" and our gloss paper stickers have arrived today. Professional service and a terrific quality product - very happy with the result.
Now let's get these sample packs out and get 2023 underway!
Black garlic is a beautiful ingredient and easy to use BUT there are a few key mistakes to avoid!
1. Believing (incorrectly) black garlic is a replacement for fresh garlic
It is fantastic that we are all keen to use Australian grown fresh garlic. We only use local Australian garlic in all our black garlic products. It can be tempting to turn to black garlic when the fresh Australian seasonal garlic is over. However, chopping up black garlic like fresh cloves, and cremating them in the fry pan leads to little black dots of bitter disappointment! You can add black garlic to hot dishes - just stir through the pasta at the last moment.
2. Adding black garlic on pizza before baking producing volcanic rocks
Black garlic is fabulous on pizza - remember it is already cooked so adding it before baking, leaves black lumps on top. Slice it over as the pizza comes out of the oven, just like adding rocket.
3. Eating black garlic straight from the fridge reducing flavour
Black garlic can be stored in a cool pantry - in hot humid climates perhaps the fridge is the best choice. Get your cloves out to come to room temperature before serving. The flavour is full and luscious.
4. Saving black garlic for best
Be adventurous - don't just serve black garlic to your best friends as a special cheeseboard treat. Have it on hand for your eggs every morning, with a cracker for healthy morning tea or slapped on tonight's steak. Add some to your next batch of dark chocolate brownies - delicious!
We make our black garlic with love and care, and want to send it out to good homes to be treated with love and care! Hope you find these tips useful. If you have other tips please let us know
Great read in today's SMH by Callan Boys, highlighting the growth in condiments and pastes showcasing strong umami flavours. Umami is the 5th taste, a savoury flavour typical of mushrooms, soy, tomatoes and some meats. Foods high in umami have that lovely mouth watering flavour - historically delivered often by MSG, now natural flavours are popular.
You can get your umami fix in several ways: slow fermented miso in "Oomite" (looking dark and thick like Vegemite), chilli sesame and fermented black beans with fried garlic in a crispy chilli oil, a combination of tamari and tahini or "Tumami" a match of tomato paste with black garlic from Alice Zaslavsky.
Increasingly customers seem to be turning from highly processed foods and appreciating the clean flavours of real food like Garlicious Grown Black Garlic Paste - pure umami in a jar! Great to restock in June as the free post deal for orders over $100 expires at the end of the month.
This is a wonderful authentic recipe from our friend and colleague, Fiona Aveyard of Outback Lamb - thanks Fiona!
Black garlic is new to me, but it has kind of become my "go-to" addition to basically everything, as it adds a real depth of flavour that can't be replicated by any other spice. You don't have to worry about garlic breath either, because it doesn't have that element. You can use pure black garlic powder (you won't need much of this!) or the black garlic cloves. Both can be used interchangeably for this recipe. I get my black garlic from @garliciousgrown and cannot recommend their products more highly.
I have made this casserole or stew many times. I sometimes will swap out diced shoulder for shanks depending on what I have available, both are equally delicious. Nigella Lawson recommends allowing 1 shank per person, then shredding the meat from the bones to make it go further. This is messy and you absolutely have to extract every bit of marrow from the bones, but always worth the effort. Six shanks would feed 10 using this method.
This casserole can be made up to 3 days ahead. Always cover and then refrigerate within 2 hours of making. You can also freeze it in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Always defrost overnight in the fridge before reheating. To reheat, take it out of the fridge, remove any fat from the surface and leave to come to room temperature, and preheat the oven to 170°C. Cook for around an hour and serve piping hot.
SERVES 8 -10
2 large onions, finely diced
2 tablespoons black garlic powder (plus 2 black garlic cloves if desired)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons ground allspice
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
250ml red wine
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons sea salt flakes
750gm -1kg diced lamb
2 tablespoons cornflour
Preheat the oven to 150°C.
Combine the cornflour and black garlic powder in a bowl, toss in the lamb and lightly coat.
Heat the oil and brown the floured lamb on the stovetop in batches. I do this in the casserole dish I'm using so the flavour remains. Remove the lamb and set aside.
Put the onions and (if you're using them, the black garlic cloves) in the same pan and cook for just a few minutes, or until the onion starts to soften.
Stir in the cumin seeds, ground allspice and cinnamon.
Turn the heat up to high, and then pour in the red wine. Let this bubble up again, making sure to scrape the bottom of the dish to lift any yummy crispy bits up. Add the 2 cans of tomatoes. Then fill each can with cold water from the tap and pour that in.
Stir in the salt and add the lamb back in, bring it again to a bubble, then place the lid on firmly and transfer to the oven.
Cook for 4 hours. Season to taste. Top with chopped parsley to serve. Its ready now to serve to your guests, or you can let it cool, refrigerate and then freeze as required. Creamy mashed potatoes or else couscous would be an obvious accompaniment, or a chickpea and spinach salad is also nice. Whatever your preference, be sure to pile a plate high with lots of good, crusty, bread.
You can now try Garlicious Grown black garlic at Ritchies Fine Food Stores - such beautiful award winning gourmet food retailers offering fantastic customer service in beautiful surroundings. We are delighted to be ranged there and look forward to adding our stock to more of Ritchies fabulous emporiums!
See our leading products
Black garlic peeled 50g
Black Garlic powder 25g
Black Garlic paste 100g
Black Garlic White Balsamic dressing 250mL
Black Garlic Aioli 220g
See them at Ritchies Mosman, Ritchies Dromana, Ritchies Mount Waverley, Ritchies Mount Eliza and Ritchies Maclean
Looking for new flavours in 2021?
The Global Taste Trends report maps out the key tastes linked to trends across the world, by nutrition company Kerry. The 2021 report shows the impact of our 2020 year on our flavour choices. Apparently we are searching for solace in our food choices:
The great news is Australians are strong supporters of small businesses. According to a recent Fiverr report, six of ten Australians report they would support a small business over a larger company for the same purchase. The disruption of 2020 has pushed buying local, with 97% of respondents saying they will continue this habit into 2021. It seems connections to local neighbourhoods have strengthened. We have certainly been grateful for a huge lift in online sales, our version of "buying local"!
Talking of support, we are asking for a favour - we need your VOTE!
We are thrilled to be a finalist in the Back to Business initiative with Kochie Business Builders (in partnership with Yellow Online and eBay). There are some great businesses sharing their tips for getting back to business in 2021. We hope you will vote for the Garlicious Grown tip, as the prize is a fantastic opportunity to be featured on KBB TV aired nationally on Channel 7.
Please go to https://www.kochiesbusinessbuilders.com.au/back-to-business/ You can see the Garlicious Grown back to business tip and then further down the page vote for us. Just a little tip, click the circle above the Garlicious Grown image then enter your email address to validate your vote. Thanks in advance for your support!
Thrilled to be a finalist in the Back to Business initiative with Kochie Business Builders (in partnership with Yellow Online and eBay). There are some great businesses sharing their tips for getting back to business in 2021.
We hope you will vote for the Garlicious Grown tip, as the prize is a fantastic opportunity to be featured on KBB TV aired nationally on Channel 7. You can see the Garlicious Grown back to business tip here and then further down the page vote for us. Just a little tip, click the circle above the Garlicious Grown image then enter your email address to validate your vote. Thanks in advance for your support!
Lovely to be supplying Vegmasters, an outstanding Australian supplier of fresh processed vegetables and herbs to Australia's largest food manufacturers. Vegmasters came to us seeking black garlic paste and it has been fantastic to start supplying beautiful quality bulk paste. Their initial order was for 250kg and we delivered direct. You can see our 10kg tubs on arrival.
It was so nice to be warmly welcomed into the Vegmasters supply family - certainly our only delivery that included a refreshing cool drink to say hello! Thanks for the hospitality Vegmasters - we look forward to great times ahead.