Honey fermented garlic recipe your friend and family will love!
Honey fermented garlic is so easy to make, it’s perfect for first-time fermenters. The hardest part is peeling a jarful of garlic!
Garlic and honey have many proven health benefits. You can enjoy their beneficial properties by using them alone or together. They can be taken as medicinal supplements, or added to recipes in their natural form.
Garlic and honey have been used in traditional medicines around the world. The main health ingredient in garlic is allicin. It contains oxygen, sulfur, and other chemicals that give garlic antibacterial and disease-fighting properties.
It might sound counterintuitive to use honey as a fermentation medium due to its antimicrobial properties. Honey’s low pH (acidity) and extremely low water content help to kill off any invading microbes. However, by simply increasing the water content obtained by the juices released by the garlic, honey’s smothering antibacterial defence is weakened. Beneficial bacteria are allowed entry and the wild yeasts that were dormant in raw honey are stimulated. These yeasts kickstart the fermentation process by consuming the glucose and fructose found in the honey (and fructose from garlic), producing alcohol, carbon dioxide and acetic acid. These fermentation byproducts, along with keeping the ferment in an anaerobic (no oxygen) environment, preserve the food and create amazing flavour.
Fermenting garlic in honey is a perfect ferment for beginners because it is so easy! The raw honey naturally provides the right conditions for a delicious and probiotic ferment.
Fermented garlic honey should become a staple in your home. It’s really easy to make, will elevate the flavor of even the most tried and true dishes and can be your secret immune-boosting and cold-fighting weapon. Try it, and you’ll always need a jar on hand.
- 2 heads of fresh garlic
- 1 cup raw honey
- Sanitize an air-tight glass jar.
- Fill the jar with peeled garlic leaving a 3cm of headroom. Bruise the garlic a bit to help with the fermentation.
- Do this by pressing down on the garlic slightly with my kitchen knife until it cracks.
- Pour raw honey over the garlic until it is completely covered. The garlic will naturally float above the honey, and that’s fine.
- Place the jar somewhere dark to ferment, like a closet. Open the jar every 3 days to release the build-up of pressure (from the fermentation) then reseal the jar and turn it over. Rotating the jar will help keep the garlic submerged under the honey.
- Ferment for at least 1 week or up to 3 months.
- Once you start to use the garlic, store the jar in the fridge to prevent potential contamination.
No worries about botulism when it comes to this or other cultured foods. The good bacteria dominate and keep pathogens out. Botulism can only occur when you heat food and can or remove the oxygen. Heating the foods kills all the bacteria and then only botulism can survive the high heat. You never do this with cultured foods which makes them one of the safest foods to make and eat. Good bacteria dominate!
On average honey has a pH of around 3.9, so it is too acidic for botulism to be an issue. However, it is important to use pure raw honey in this recipe. A lot of commercial honey is fake or adulterated, which wouldn’t have the right pH, nor the natural microorganisms required for fermentation.
Fermented Garlic Tips
- Leave a couple of inches of headspace at the top of the jar.
- Seal the jar but not so tightly that pressure cannot escape.
- Place the jar on a saucer because it’s going to leak honey as it ferments and bubbles – a positive sign of fermentation!
- At first, the garlic cloves will float up to the top of the jar.
- Give it a stir (or tighten cap and shake) every few days to coat all the cloves.
- The honey will liquify as it starts to ferment. Eventually all the garlic sinks to bottom.
- The actual fermentation will slow down after the first couple of weeks.
- We recommend changing to a plastic lid at this point, because this ferment seems to commonly form rust on the lid.