Have you ever seen black garlic? It is not the common garlic that has gone bad, but on the contrary a fermented product rich in properties and benefits.
We all know that garlic is a natural product that is particularly rich in properties and beneficial for health. We commonly use it in the kitchen also due to its ability to flavor foods in an unmistakable way.
Did you know that there is also a black garlic? It is actually the common white garlic subjected to a particular process that makes it change not only its color but also its consistency and some characteristics.
Black garlic is obtained by fermentation and oxidation. Garlic wreaths are subjected to these two processes at a temperature of about 30 degrees for a period of over two months. Once the necessary time has elapsed, we arrive at the production of a dark -colored garlic with a softer consistency, precisely black garlic which also has a less intense smell and flavor than the more commonly known and used one.
This original garlic was born in Korea in 2004 and in South East Asia it was immediately received with great interest for its characteristics. For some years the product has also appeared on the European and US market arousing a certain curiosity: initially it was a completely unobtainable product, now it is starting to be available in some well-stocked supermarkets or in organic shops even in our country.
But now let’s discover all the properties of black garlic and the benefits it brings to our body.
Black garlic: properties and benefits
Black garlic keeps all the properties of garlic almost intact and indeed somehow manages to further enhance them. All this has been confirmed by some scientific researches that have seen how this fermented product has an edge over the common white garlic:
- It has a higher amount of antioxidants
- It is rich in calcium and protein
- It contains much more phosphorus
- It has strong anticancer qualities
- It reduces cholesterol thanks to the presence of a substance known as s-allylcycteine
- Keeps blood sugar at bay
- Contains less allicin (substance responsible for the characteristic strong smell and taste of garlic)
This last point can be considered an advantage for some, since it greatly reduces the unwelcome effects of eating garlic and thus allows the consumption of this food even to those who usually stayed away from it. In reality, allicin is a very important substance, the one that gives this tuber its main antibacterial properties. A lack, therefore, which can be considered at the same time a disadvantage of black garlic compared to the garlic that we usually consume every day.
Black garlic: the uses
But what is special about this black garlic? The real innovation lies in the fact that it is generally appreciated even by those who usually cannot bear the overly pungent and persistent smell and taste of the common garlic. The fermentation process, in fact, makes this product more easily digestible and avoids the unpleasant sensation of having the smell and taste in the mouth even after a long time from the moment it is consumed. In short, you can enjoy the benefits of garlic without incurring unwanted side effects.
The flavor of black garlic is in fact more delicate and leaves a decidedly sweeter aftertaste on the palate reminiscent of that of licorice. Keep in mind that the soft texture of this garlic, which may seem strange to those who have never tried it and buy it for the first time, is completely normal and is due to the fermentation and oxidation process.
Given all the properties and benefits of black garlic, we can consider this food a sort of super food to be included more often in our diet. It is no coincidence that in Japan it is considered a real supplement to combat psycho-physical fatigue.
You can use it as you do with the most common garlic, raw or cooked to enrich your favorite dishes. Naturally, the raw version preserves all the properties of the tuber better, while some substances tend to degrade with cooking.
Black garlic: contraindications
Black garlic has no particular contraindications, however it is important not to exceed the doses to avoid the possible appearance of nausea, vomiting or gastritis.
It must be considered as an environmental contraindication that, given that it is mainly produced in Korea and China, to reach our tables it has to travel many kilometers and it is not always easy to know if you are faced with a quality product. Black garlic is therefore a food with a significant environmental impact to be consumed without exaggerating and to be purchased always from certified organic origin.
Black garlic: where to buy it
Some time ago black garlic was really hard to find, now it is spreading more and more even in common supermarkets, it is still easier to buy it in organic or exotic food stores.
It is also available in some online shops where you can buy both garlic to use in the kitchen and supplements in capsules or tablets for a more targeted health action (always ask your doctor for advice before taking natural supplements).