what’s that food?

What happens when you decide to experiment with a byproduct of your crops? For one Island farm, you end up with a unique and exclusive food that could potentially take the culinary world by storm.

Black Pearls are ready to take the culinary world by storm Photo credit: Laura Weatherbie/Salty

Black Pearls are a food product that came from thinking outside the box, taking the corms that grow on an Elephant Garlic bulb and slow roasting them at very low temperatures for three weeks. What results are small crispy bundles whose contents pack a punch in their flavour and texture.

Elephant Garlic is, technically speaking, not true garlic, but a part of the leek family. With a milder taste than true garlic, the bulbs are grown by Eureka Garlic in Kensington, PEI and it was the farm’s idea to try and see what happened when they applied their black garlic roasting process to the small corms (like miniature cloves) that developed on the outside of a elephant garlic bulb.

When you squeeze open the hard outer shell of the roasted corms, you discover a dark, soft creamy inside, hence the name of Black Pearl. The smell reminds one of dates, and the taste of these pearls is subtle, sweet, and a little fruity, with slight undertones of prune. The texture is silky smooth on the tongue and the pearls almost melt in one’s mouth.

Black Pearls are such a new product, they beg for experimentation. We think their sweetness could be a perfect counterpart to a creamy brie or a salty oyster. After all, what better combination can you think of than an oyster with its own pearl?

Currently, Black Pearls are available to purchase at Eureka Garlic, or you can find them at the Thursday night farmers’ market at the Farm Centre in Charlottetown. Quantities are limited, as the current stock of all the Black Pearls in the world is less than 15 pounds.

About Salty Staff

A diverse group of people, the Salty team works hard each month to bring you great stories about PEI's food and farming community.

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