Black Garlic, Unveiled

It sounds like Coco Marante and I have something in common: we've both been eyeballing the Black Garlic at Trader Joes for the last few months, wondering (fearing?) what could possibly be inside of that little package.

Like most people, I love garlic when it's prepared properly and applied in humane amounts. But black garlic? Garlic is already such a powerful aromatic ingredient- literally medicinal, to some extent- could a black version be anything but more potent? Black just sort of sounds rotten, to me. You look at the package and see the word "fermented", and it only supports that suspicion. Is it remotely possible that it is something I would like to put in my mouth?

Fortunately for us all, Coco is more curious (and courageous) than I am, and the news is quite positive:

Peeling away the parchment-colored skin reveals glossy, midnight black cloves. They’re solid but soft, easily sliced thinly or blended into a sauce. The garlic has a smooth and silky texture and a mellow flavor, with a tangy note reminiscent of balsamic vinegar. There’s none of the usual sulfurous sting of fresh garlic, so it won’t give you garlic breath, even if you eat a whole clove or two.

This, my friends, is good news. Anything that gives me another, more breath-friendly way of enjoying garlic is a victory for everyone. Be sure to check out for their suggestions for adding black garlic to your recipes.