Whether you want to consider this as fermented garlic honey or honey fermented garlic, the process and dish are the same. By combining fresh garlic with raw honey and allowing it to ferment, you end up with garlic that is sweet and mellow, along with a garlic-infused honey that not only tastes good but packs a punch of health benefits too!
Not only is this honey garlic ferment shelf-stable, but unlike other methods to preserve garlic (which often carry the risk of botulism), for this method, it is improbable. The acidity of honey means that bacteria are largely unable to survive and multiply, making this honey’s shelf life potentially endless. That is if it’s stored with a tight lid on at all times when not being used.
GARLIC AND HONEY HEALTH BENEFITS
Both garlic and honey have been used for centuries for traditional remedies. When combined, the two provide anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and immune-boosting properties. This makes this fermented garlic perfect for enjoying during cold/flu season!
In fact, the antimicrobial properties of honey make it seem like an unlikely choice for a fermentation medium. However, fermenting garlic in honey allows the garlic to release enough juices into the honey to allow for the fermentation process to occur.
On top of the above, several studies have found that garlic may also be beneficial towards heart health by lowering blood pressure, cholesterol and preventing clotting and hardened/stiff blood vessels. More so, the high antioxidant content in both ingredients means that it may help to protect our brains from inflammation-based diseases such as dementia and Alzheimers.
Raw honey: make sure to use raw, unpasteurized honey. The process won’t work if it’s not raw, as the microbes will have been killed off in the pasteurization process.
Garlic: it’s best to use the freshest garlic you can find for the quickest and best fermentation results.
Sterilized glass jar and sterilized lid (Ball canning jars are perfect)
STEP 1: PREPARE THE GARLIC
First, you’ll need to peel the garlic. Then transfer the peeled garlic cloves to a sterilized glass jar with an airtight seal.
STEP 2: ADD THE HONEY AND FERMENT
Then, fill the jar with honey, mix it, and then seal it.
Once sealed, turn the jar upside down (this is why a good seal is essential) and set it aside. Place a plate beneath the jar, just in case, though we’ve never had issues with overspill/leaks.
For two weeks, you’ll need to ‘burp’ the jar daily. To do this, open the lid to allow any build-up of gases (CO2) to release and then close, shake (or stir it), turn upside down, and set aside again.
Be quick while doing this as too much oxygen introduced to the honey and garlic at this stage can impact the fermentation process. Just a quick opening of the lid should be enough to release the gases.
It will take about two weeks for fermentation to occur. During this time, you’ll likely see “activity” in the form of foaming or bubbling within the jar. The amount can vary, and it won’t always be majorly noticeable. The honey will become more watery, too, as the garlic releases liquid into the mixture.
After two weeks, the fermented garlic is ready to enjoy, though I’d wait a month for even better results! If you don’t plan on using it very often, then it may still need burping occasionally, though the build-up of gases will slow down over time.
**Store in a cool, dark, dry place.