Black Garlic 101: Another Superfood

Black garlic is not well known compared to white garlic but it has similar benefits. Its flavor is complex with a mixture of sweet and savory flavor. It tastes a lot like molasses but has an obvious garlicky flavor.

Its texture is jelly-like so that it can melt in your mouth like a dried fruit. It tastes great and can be used in any recipe that also uses white garlic.

It was just introduced to the food market a few years ago in Korean cooking although you can buy black garlic that is grown in California at a health food store.

Choose organic black garlic that doesn’t contain pesticides or artificial fertilizers. Black garlic is garlic that has been fermented for about a month with strictly controlled conditions of humidity and heat. Like white garlic, it has many health benefits.

Health Benefits of Black Garlic

S allyl cysteine

By fermenting garlic for a month to get black garlic, you create a type of super garlic. The main compound you want to be concerned with is S allyl cysteine, which is a natural part of garlic and a type of cysteine, an amino acid. This compound is found in higher concentrations when compared to white garlic and is believed to decrease cancer risk and keep the cholesterol levels low.

Antimicrobial, Antifungal, And Antibiotic Properties

Like white garlic, black garlic has antimicrobial, antifungal, and antibiotic properties because of a natural ingredient known as allicin. The S allyl cysteine in black garlic helps absorb the allicin so it is more easily metabolized and so it has better infection-fighting properties.

Antioxidants To Fight Disease

Black garlic is also high in antioxidants—about two times the antioxidant abilities of regular garlic. Antioxidants fight oxygen free radicals to keep the cells safe from damage and to keep the body from aging.

Black garlic is a potent substance whose antioxidant properties are believed to extend to the support of the heart, the brain (against Alzheimer’s disease), rheumatoid diseases, certain chronic diseases, and circulation difficulties.

According to Taoist myth, black garlic was believed to extend life. While it doesn’t confer immortality, it is extremely healthy for you. Its antioxidant properties alone are superior to white garlic so you might want to use it instead of white garlic for dishes that call for garlic.

Characteristics of Black Garlic

Because black garlic is fermented, it doesn’t have the strong odor and powerful flavor or regular garlic so it is easier to eat and more appealing to people who don’t like white garlic. It tastes a lot like dried fruit, with a sweet and smoky flavor.

It is somewhat chewy in texture but can be cut up like white garlic. When you take in white garlic, you can’t get away from the smell of garlic breath, even in capsules.

Black garlic has no strong odor or flavor when compared to white garlic so that it can be eaten in larger quantities without having to face the strong flavor and odor of white garlic.

Unlike raw white garlic, black garlic lacks the annoyance of its strong flavor and smell. It is like a fine wine that only gets better with age. It can be used in any type of recipe that also uses white garlic but it won’t be as strong.

Black Garlic Nutrition Facts

A serving of black garlic is about 15 grams or slightly under an ounce.
Each serving size contains:

• 40 calories
• 0 sodium
• 0 Fat
• 8 grams of carbohydrates (4 grams of sugar)
• 3 grams of fiber
• 0 cholesterol
• 2% of the recommended daily allowances of iron based on a 2000-calorie diet

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