The Garlic Difference
Just how many different types of garlic are there? The answer may surprise you! There are more than 11 well-known varieties of garlic, which typically come in two major types: hardneck and softneck. Most people know of the traditional white garlic, but what about the others? Have you ever heard of black or Ivan garlic? What are the differences in taste and texture between Ivan garlic or black vs. Music garlic? How are they used differently in cooking?
Garlic is a fragrant, delicious, and versatile vegetable used worldwide to spice up dishes. However, garlic is much more than just a tasty ingredient. It has many health benefits for which it is recognized and incorporated into recipes everywhere, and why not? As a great addition to so many meals, garlic adds flavour that few other things can match. It’s good for you to eat, and it’s plentiful in many places around the world.
Learning about the different kinds of garlic, from white to black garlic and everything in between, is a great way to expand your culinary horizons and inject some much-needed nutrients into your diet. Who says healthy foods can’t taste great?
Organic garlic comes in various shapes and sizes, and each is great for different uses. If you want to elevate your diet to a whole new level, making good use of garlic in all its forms and flavours is your best bet. How many different types of garlic are there?
More than enough to change the way you think about food!
Neck and Neck: Types of Garlic
Garlic is a vegetable and belongs to the allium family, along with leeks, chives, onions, and shallots. With 11 known varieties, some are classified as softneck varieties, while the others are hardneck varieties—you may have seen the latter as they were attached to a woody stem. While this allows you to do certain things like hanging your garlic for curing once you’ve harvested it, hardneck varieties are also known for their more significant flavour complexities and slower maturation. These varieties are often highly prized by garlic connoisseurs, though all flavours and different types of garlic are delicious. If you typically buy your garlic at supermarkets, you’re probably purchasing softneck garlic, while you can find both kinds at farmer’s markets and similar places.
So what are some of the different types of garlic? What do they offer that the others don’t? Let’s peel back some layers to find out what tasty treats lie beneath.
White Garlic: The One Everyone Knows
If you’re reading this, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve seen (and enjoyed) white garlic. This is the variety that everyone is familiar with, and you probably have some lying around your kitchen even now. The cloves of white garlic are pungent and have a huge impact on any recipe.
Black Garlic: A Sweet and Savoury Alternative
Black garlic is not grown as such; it’s not a simple matter of “black vs. white garlic, which one tastes better?” Instead, it is white garlic that has been treated by heat and allowed to “ferment,” in a sense. The result is savoury and mildly sweet garlic with a different texture. The process also enhances the nutrients found in regular garlic and its concomitant health benefits.
But its key use is its magical ability! It amplifies the flavour of all the ingredients in any recipe without dominating the dish - Black garlic is the secret ingredient.
Colours of the Garlic Spectrum
There are so many different kinds of garlic, but here are a few of the major ones and how they can benefit your culinary artistry. If you want to learn more about the different subspecies and varieties of garlic, we think you’ll find the research worth sinking your teeth into!
Purple garlic varieties, such as the brilliant Chesnok Red or the flavour-intense Bogatyr strain, are noted for their robust tastes and the spice they lend to your cooking.
Some examples of beautiful silverskin varieties include the Nootka Rose, a favourite of the Pacific Northwest. Known to grow easily in warmer climes and boasting a vibrant garlicky flavour, the Rose truly deserves its name.
Aha! This milder variant is not a true garlic and is a member of the leek family. However, it has a similar flavour profile and usage in cooking, so don’t worry! You can’t always substitute it for garlic in a recipe, but it has plenty of mouth-watering uses in your dishes.
Many kinds of porcelain garlic have a richer and muskier flavour than others. Music garlic is an exception; being less spicy but more complex in its flavour notes, hence is excellent for general use; hence. Ivan garlic is spicy, but once it is cooked, it has a creamy & buttery flavour.
Health Benefits of Garlic
What are the health benefits of eating garlic? It’s full of antioxidants, which act as a powerhouse health supplement in your body: fighting free radicals that cause aging and helping protect your brain against dementia and other forms of cell damage. Other compounds in garlic can help reduce blood pressure and cholesterol and even boost your immune system, to name a few things!
Full of vitamins, fibre, and antioxidants, some even call garlic a superfood—and you can ask Hippocrates about the benefits!
Beyond Garlic: The Importance of Regenerative Farming
At Food 4 Life Market Garden, we go beyond the traditional garden market. Food is only as good as the soil it grows; that soil depends on people to nurture it to its full potential. We practice regenerative farming techniques because we want the ground to be the best quality that it can be, and we believe in only using regenerative and eco-friendly practices. We can only get out of the earth what we put into it, so Food 4 Life puts only the best organic ingredients and the honest work needed. You’ll feel the difference in every bite.
How many different types of garlic are there? Enough that everyone on Earth should have the chance to enjoy the flavourful and healthful benefits of this fantastic vegetable. We’re happy to do our part in ensuring that you can always add the highest-quality organic black garlic and raw garlic to your recipes.