It was first created to preserve garlic for the year ahead. Now black garlic is a multi-purpose ingredient found everything from skincare products and shampoo to deserts and dietary supplements.
Chances are, you've only heard about black garlic in the last few years. Here in the UK, black garlic is a somewhat recent phenomenon, being first sold here in 2009. Garlic has been grown and processed into black garlic in Asia for at least 2,000 years. Although nobody can be certain, it was most likely invented out of necessity, as preserving food in this way can make it last significantly longer, without spoiling. Black garlic was traditionally used as a food and as a way to promote good health, but now people use black garlic in various ways.
In the Kitchen
Black garlic is an excellent addition to all sorts of dishes. It's deep, fruity flavour makes it an extremely versatile ingredient. People cook with it in a variety of ways: to flavour sauces, stocks and soups, to marinade meat and to spruce up salads. In the West, it was initially used by exclusive, high-end restaurants to create high-class dishes. Over time, black garlic has become a more accessible ingredient to the everyday consumer; more people have started cooking with black garlic and it is gradually gaining popularity.
In Deserts and Sweet Treats
It has no garlic taste or smell and is surprisingly sweet. It can be used in recipes ranging from artisan ice cream to chocolate brownies. The complex flavour of black garlic makes it a unique ingredient to use in desserts and other sweet treats. People have made pound cake, choux pastry and even chocolate chip cookies using this aged and fermented garlic product – it really is that versatile. In Japan, some people eat raw cloves of black garlic as a sweet snack.
However, there is a catch. Black garlic can fetch a very high price; a small 50g tub can set you back over £5.00, and that's excluding delivery costs. The ageing and fermentation process used to produce black garlic takes a long time and adds to the other costs of growing black garlic. This is why black garlic cloves are often around four times as expensive as their white counterparts. It might help you to make Michelin-star meals and delicious desserts, but buying black garlic cloves, extracts or pastes will rapidly push up the cost of your weekly food shop.
In Shampoo and Skin Cream
Black garlic has recently made its way into the cosmetics and beauty market. It's being used in soaps, shampoos and other skincare products, often using black garlic extract. These products often claim to have anti-ageing or anti-inflammatory effects, but there isn't any evidence to support this. Black garlic is not absorbed through the skin - using soap, moisturiser, face wash or shampoo containing black garlic probably won't have a noticeable effect on health.
Black garlic contains amino acids, organosulfur compounds, minerals, vitamins, flavonoids, saponins and more. To create black garlic with the optimal levels of each micronutrient, high-quality garlic is needed, along with constant analysis, careful processing and strict quality control. Some of these skincare and beauty products could be produced in countries with food regulations less rigorous than UK standards. Here at Kwai, we use the finest quality, natural Japanese garlic to produce our supplement, Kwai Heartcare+ with Japanese Black Garlic. We take pride in precision and only harvest our bulbs once they have reached their ideal micronutrient content. After a carefully controlled ageing and fermentation process, we package the black garlic into easy-to-swallow, odour-free tablets. Black garlic can affect the skin in a variety of ways, read more here.
In Kwai Heartcare+
By far, the most efficient way of getting black garlic into your daily routine is by taking a black garlic supplement. It's quicker, easier and often cheaper than buying whole cloves of black garlic. Kwai Heartcare+ with Japanese Black Garlic contains 450mg of natural Black Garlic in every tablet. We coat each tablet 60 times to ensure they are easy to swallow and free from odours and taste. Kwai Heartcare+ with Japanese Black Garlic contains a standardised dose of allicin, delivering exactly 2,700µg per tablet. Find out why allicin is considered an excellent heart health-supporting molecule by clicking here.