Then I forgot about it. Which happens. I fiddled with my cheeses, made some sausage, and time rolled on. Until this past weekend, when I saw it in the organic foods section of the grocery store. The flame burst forth anew!
Originally a flavoring of Korea and Thailand, black garlic is just regular garlic, which gets its namesake color from oxidization. It is not fermented with a microbe like kefir, or salt like sauerkraut. BlackGarlic.com explained that each bulb is naturally fermented over a month through the use of high heat and humidity. I'm wondering if I can recreate this environment by placing a ceramic crock on my radiator, filling the bottom with a 1/2 inch of sterilized salt water, and suspending bulbs of garlic on a grate above the water. But part of me thinks I'll just end up with rotting garlic, rather than a culinary delicacy.
To try the black garlic on an entree level, I decided to try something Korean. Knowing how much Youngjoo and Steve love eating octopus whenever they visit Youngjoo's family in Korea, I thought it would be a natural choice. Octopus has a slightly meatier flavor than squid, while still maintaining some of the natural sweetness of squid. I slowly poached the octopus for about an hour until its rubbery texture faded into forkable-tenderness. I pureed the black garlic with more olive oil, a bit of soy sauce, and minced scallions. After pre-heating the broiler, the octopus got chopped up into bite-sized nodules and tossed in the black garlic glaze. Two minutes under the broiler seared the garlicky goodness into the cephalopod's delicious flesh.