Sure, you may have had regular garlic, but have you enjoyed the unique taste of aged black garlic? Not only is the taste unique, it may be better for you. Here’s the story.
You already know the importance of adding color to your diet. Most nutritionists recommend piling your plate high with a rainbow of colors to reap the benefits of a multitude of antioxidants and phytonutrients. But, what about black? Foods that are black in color have recently caught the fancy of chefs and nutritionists who have discovered their unique taste and health benefits. From black rice to black vinegar, black is the new trend when it comes to eating well. Now, to join the every expanding array of black foods is aged black garlic.
Aged black garlic was initially developed five years ago in South Korea, but has only recently taken off with American chefs eager to incorporate this new garlic variation into their special dishes. Although the developers of aged black garlic are unwilling to reveal the secrets they used to create this gourmet treat, it involves a fermentation process that delivers a garlic that’s sweeter, smokier stickier, and chewier than standard garlic. The powerful garlic flavor most people have grown to know and love is more subdued. The fermentation process also changes the texture of the garlic, giving it the consistency of dried fruit, but with an almost jelly-like interior.
Like regular garlic, aged black garlic is also a good source of s-allylcysteine, a natural chemical that’s believed to have health benefits. S-allylcysteine has been studied for its cancer preventive properties as well as its ability to lower cholesterol. The fermentation process also produces a high level of antioxidants which gives black garlic even more potent health benefits. Most sources say that the antioxidant content of aged garlic is up to twice that found in conventional garlic.
How do people respond to the taste of aged black garlic? By all accounts people are fascinated by its smoky taste and chewy texture. The fermentation process gives it a carmelized quality that appeals to those who find the taste of conventional garlic too overpowering. Chefs in some of the finer restaurants around the country are enjoying the challenges of creating new recipes to play up its unique flavor. Another advantage? It lacks the pungent odor of conventional garlic that leaves you groping for the breath mints.
Aged black garlic provides a unique combination of taste and health benefits. Right now, you may only find it served in higher end restaurants, but the demand is growing. Some natural food markets such as Whole Foods already stock it in some areas and it can be purchased online at saucenspice.com. Expect to hear more about these tasty and healthy gourmet treat.