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Oct 25, 2012 09:43 AM

ISO Efficient yet inexpensive setups to ferment garlic.Aka Black garlic

I am ordering 2 5.5oz containers of black garlic from's $31.69 shipped.Paying $8.81-$9.71 in shipping alone for 1-2 containers is going to get expensive if I plan to buy regularly.If I like it,I want to make it myself.I read it's 40 days min & 60 max for best quality.
Temp must stay a constant 140-150F & the garlic needs to be in a tightly sealed container or chamber so it won't go bone dry during the process.What do you use to make your black garlic?

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  1. I'm a not.Based on your information,I think what's required is well beyond the home rig
    immersion circulater,dehydrator or smoker.
    HERE IS WHY the endeavor is a bit much for most.Ivestment $$$ for very limited return.
    Can,canning equipment for just the dry pack garlic to be just so.$$$$
    Incubator,one that can provide a constant 60*c - 66*c , 40 to 60 DAYS. REALLY BIG $ to get past 60*c constant.For just a 60*c constant there are some not insanely costly small laboratory incubators out there.Next you still need to feed them electricity to for 40 to 60 DAYS.I honestly don't think any moist environment incubator out there wouldn't make the cost you are paying look effective and fair.

    1. Agree with lcool. I thought it might be a nice challenge to try but didn't take more than an afternoon of research to decide it wasn't for me. Don't want to discourage you but it would be a hell of a commitment of time, space, supplies, and monitoring.

      The website charges about the same for shipping 2-8 jars (I tried it in the cart). Perhaps get extra jars, empty tightly into freezer bags and store in freezer?

      1. Our chef was making some in the dehydrator. I'm not sure if it is in whole bulbs or cloves, but pretty sure the skin is left on. I DO know that I can't breathe around the dehydrator during the first few weeks.

        1. Well I researched again. Just goes to show that a couple of years makes a difference lol! Last time I was caught up in humidity/temperature control techniques and it seemed too much.

          So with my new eyes, if were going to consider this: the only device I'd consider for continuous use over 40 days would be my Excalibur dehydrator. I am comfortable leaving it running for a couple of days at a time, but in my heart I don't think I'd actually risk it the longer period. One small electrical fire can take out your whole house. A commercial company would have fire detection and control equipment that we don't have at home.

          And further, the issue of smell: I've dehydrated garlic into chips and powder (both excellent), took about 36 hours, and thank goodness we like the smell of garlic; it was delightfully overpowering for that 36 hours then lingered for a couple of days. So for black garlic, I know it couldn't be in the house; the garage would present more of a challenge in terms of temp control (and of course the risk of fire starting unnoticed).

          The other home method I read of was using a rice cooker over 10+ days. My rice cooker is ancient and was probably already a fire hazard when it rolled off the line back in the day. No way I'd leave that little bugger on its own.

          All that said, here's the links I found:

          Instructables: spendy, involved electrical/wiring knowledge:

 (his blog


          Photo using Ronco-style dehydrator

          Using rice cooker:

          eHow -- always iffy source of info; oven/dehyd:

          Some slow-cooker attempts:

          5 Replies
          1. re: DuchessNukem

            I got this silly bug once.Three of us had access to a university lab incubator,serfs to do the baby sitting,monitoring and even with that we nixed it.

            1. re: lcool

              Yeah, the further research just convinced me more not to, but I figured that the OP deserved to see what was out there since I'd done the work. :)

              1. re: DuchessNukem

                Instead we built a still,buggy ideas like this usually need an outlet.What did you do?

                1. re: lcool

                  Lol. Short-attention-span projects. Re-rooting Barbies with fibers from the hardware store; five separate composting bins; fermented ____, "what can I soak in booze?", etc.

                  1. re: DuchessNukem

                    EXCELLENT ,good innovative energy and ideas always need a place.

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