Mar 21, 2018

Black Garlic Pork Stew (黑蒜頭燉豬肉)

Black garlic has becoming a hype in the health food category in recent years. Unlike fresh bulbs, black garlic has a denser aroma and nearly lost all its spicy character. Texture-wise, it comes with a nearly paste-like form when smashed. It is said that black garlic has nearly double the amount of antioxidants compared to white garlic. 

While some Taiwanese like to use black garlic to flavor the chicken soup, I find it irresistible when used in pork stew.

Black garlic pork stew 黑蒜頭燉豬肉 - 


  • 1 blub black garlic
  • 1 lb kurobuta pork
  • Few pieces yamaimo tofu or pre-fried tofu 
  • 3 to 4 fresh garlic cloves
  • 5 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce paste
  • 2 small chunks pre-fried old ginger (爆香後的老薑)
  • 2 cubes crystal sugar
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


Cut the pork into bigger chunks. Squeeze the black garlic cloves out, kind of like removing the skin in a way. Peel and halve fresh garlic cloves. Cut the tofu into large chunks.

Bring a pot of water to a boil and quickly cook the pork chunks, should take less than 1 minute, just enough time to draw out some foamy bits. If using high quality kurobuta pork, very little foam will emerge. Once ready, drain well and set aside.

Use a big pot, drizzle some olive oil and turn to medium high heat. Add in black garlic, fresh garlic, old ginger, and some black pepper. Sear for a short moment just to release the aroma but not burning the garlics.

Transfer pork chunks over and sear for about 1 minute.

As for the tofu, if a softer and nearly falling apart kind of texture is preferred, then add the tofu into the pot now. Otherwise, add the tofu towards the end of the stewing process.

So for my version, I add the tofu in the beginning and sear for about 30 seconds. Then pour in hot water, soy sauce, and soy sauce paste. Bring to a boil then lower the heat a little, just enough heat to keep the sauce bubbling slightly. 

Stew for about 30 to 45 minutes depending on the part of the pork used and the tenderness preferred. Also try to stew till nearly all the sauce has been reduced. Pick out the ginger and add in crystal sugar cubes. Slowly stew and stir the mixture till fully melted.

You can't even pick out the garlic pieces anymore after stewing, both the black garlic and fresh garlic already melted into the sauce. It has to be delicious, don't you think so?

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