Urfa chiles and black garlic have recently fell on Chef Jodi’s radar – and have quickly become her go-to ingredients during her cooking classes and team building events.
Urfa is a Turkish chile pepper that comes from the town of Urfa, in the south of Turkey on the Syrian border. It is distinctive for its purplish-black color, irregularly sized flakes and intriguing salty-sweet-smoky-sour flavor. These premium peppers are picked and cut, dried in the sun by day, then wrapped at night to preserve their natural oils. This “sweating” process gives the chiles an oiliness and almost-damp texture, along with a delicious earthy flavor and smoky aroma. It also has hints of chocolate, with a mild dose of spiciness.
Black garlic has also become a popular spice in Chef Jodi’s recipes lately. Black garlic is a type of caramelized garlic first used as a food ingredient in Asian cuisine. It is made by heating whole bulbs of garlic over the course of several weeks – a process that results in black cloves. The taste is sweet and syrupy with hints of balsamic vinegar. Chef Jodi loves to make black garlic into a paste and mix with olive oil and then throw it on a protein or vegetable for amazing flavor. The possibilities are endless!
Both of these wonderful spices can be purchased online or in-store at Savory Spices – www.savoryspices.com. Happy cooking!