The Secret of Garlic and Dessert


Black Garlic Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Sauce | Butter Tarts with Black Garlic | Brownies with Black Garlic | Dark Chocolate & Golden Roasted Garlic Ice Cream

Skeptics of garlic-infused chocolate are always pleasantly surprised when they try festival favorites such as Le Dolci’s Garlic and Chocolate Ice Cream or Dark Chocolate Skulls filled with Black Garlic infused Salted Caramel (aka Lestat Truffles) by Chocolate Artist Laura Slack. The Secret? Use roasted or fermented garlic. And always use Ontario garlic, which has a more robust flavour and a higher sugar (Brix) content. 


Roasted garlic has a caramel taste, while fermented (black) garlic has hints of coffee, molasses and chocolate. According to the Nordic Food Lab,  the process of creating black garlic is not, strictly speaking, fermenting – the transformation is due not to microbial metabolism, but in part to enzymatic breakdown (the heat denatures alliinase, the enzyme that converts non-volatile alliin into volatile allicin, the compound responsible for fresh garlic’s pungency). The process is also due to the Maillard Reaction – a cascade of chemical reactions that produce the dark colour and complex, carmelised flavour with notes of coffee, licorice, molasses and tamarind. 


Whether it’s roasted or fermented, it’s no wonder that garlic and chocolate and other dessert ingredients are a perfect marriage. Toronto Garlic Festival has featured many innovative and delicious garlic themed desserts including chocolatier Laura Slack’s Lestat chocolate skull, voted one of “50 Crazy Good Things To Eat and Drink” by Toronto Life; Roots of Health’s Roasted Garlic Almond Brittle; Le Dolci’s Garlic-Infused Macarons; Chef Ron Raymer’s (Smoked & Cracked) Butter Tarts with Chocolate Roasted Black Garlic Praline (see recipe); Major Craig’s Black Garlic Raspberry Whiskey Jam; Magic Oven’s Garlic Infused Bread Pudding with Fruit and Garlic Compote; and Chef and Chopped Canada Winner Anne Sorrenti’s (Morgans on the Danforth) Black Garlic and Beer Lollipops (shown in photo above), or Brownies with Black Garlic (see recipe); and Just A Cup’s Garlic Chocolate Chip Cookies. 


Dark Chocolate and Roast Garlic Ice Cream (Le Dolci) 


Special ice cream flavours available only at the festival include Dark Chocolate & Golden Roasted Garlic Ice Cream (see recipe), Garlic Popcorn (by chocolatier Tim English), and; Bourbon, Butterscotch & Black Garlic (Le Dolci). Featured coffees include Warm Garlic Infused Spiced Coffee with Maple Cream and Pumpkin Vanilla Dust from the Spice Chef’s Creations. But the story of unusual but delicious food combinations with garlic doesn’t end with desserts. 



Black Garlic Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Sauce

Maria @ Sift & Whisk


For the Cake

  • 225 gm unsalted butter
  • • 40 gm cocoa powder
  • • 5 ml Sea salt
  • • 250 ml Water
  • • 500 ml All-purpose flour, plus flour for bottom of pan
  • • 430 ml Sugar
  • • 7.5 ml Baking Soda
  • • 2 Eggs
  • • 5 ml Vanilla Extract
  • • 125 ml Sour Cream
  • • 15 ml Black Garlic

For the Rasberry Sauce

  • • 500 ml Fresh or frozen raspberries
  • • 45 ml Sugar
  • • 2.5 ml Lemon juice


For The Cake Place rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Brush Cake Magic onto the inside of a 10-cup Bundt cake pan. (Alternatively, butter and flour the inside of the cake pan.) In a medium saucepan, combine butter, cocoa powder, salt, and water. Melt over medium heat, stirring to combine. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, and baking soda. Gradually pour in the chocolate mixture, whisking constantly with your opposite hand, until the mixture is smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, whisking until combined after each addition. Whisk in the sour cream and vanilla extract until smooth. Chop the head of black garlic in half, then remove cloves from the skin and place in a small mixing bowl. Mash cloves into a paste with the back of a spoon. Whisk the black garlic paste into the cake batter until smooth. Pour the batter into your prepared Bundt cake pan and bake until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the cake comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Place pan on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes, then invert the cake onto the wire rack and let it cool completely.
For the Raspberry Sauce Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, mashing the raspberries slightly, until raspberries are broken down, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and strain into a liquid measuring cup through cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds. Pour over the top of the cake, then serve (with fresh raspberries, if desired).




Butter Tarts with Black Garlic

Chef Ron Raymer



  • 450 gram Lard
  • • 2 ml Salt
  • • 950 ml Flour, sifted
  • • 1 Egg, Separated
  • • 240 ml Lemonade
  • • Zest of lemon rind


  • • 180 ml Brown Sugar
  • • 240 ml Corn Syrup
  • • 2 Eggs
  • • 125 ml Unsalted butter, softened
  • • 5 ml vanilla extract
  • • Pinch of salt

Apples, Browned

  • • 15 ml Butter
  • • 15 ml Brown Sugar
  • • 1 ml Cinnamon
  • • 1 Granny Smith apple cored and sliced

Other Fillings and Garnish

  • • 36 Pecan halves
  • • 90 ml Raisins
  • • 4 cloves Black garlic sliced
  • • 115 grams Dark unsweetened bakers chocolate


For Pastry

  • • Gently combine lard, salt and flour. Do not overwork.
  • • Beat egg yolk, add lemonade and lemon rind and whisk for a few seconds.
  • • Beat egg white until light and fluffy.
  • • Add yolk and lemonade mixture to the pastry, gently working it in.
  • • Add egg white and fold in.
  • • Form into ball. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

For Filling

  • • While pastry is resting, combine brown sugar, corn syrup, eggs, butter, vanilla and salt in stainless steel bowl. Whisk until smooth. Set aside.

For Apples

  • • Melt butter with brown sugar and cinnamon in saucepan on low heat.
  • • Add apple and cook until slices are soft.
  • • Roll out pastry and put in tart shells or muffin pans to desired thickness (¼-inch).
  • • Put 3 pecan halves on walls of each tart.
  • • Add 1 apple slice, 3 raisins and 1 black garlic slice to each tart.
  • • Fill tarts with butter/corn syrup mixture to edge. Do not overfill.
  • • Bake at 375ºF (190ºC) approximately 30 minutes.
  • • Let cool. Remove tarts.
  • • Melt chocolate and then use to brush edges of tart. Drizzle remainder over tarts if desired. Serve.





Brownies with Black Garlic

Chef Anne Sorrenti

Adapted from David Lebovitz’s “Absolute Best Brownies” recipe (Leite’s Culinaria)



  • 90 ml Butter, plus more to grease foil
  • • 110 grams Semisweet chocolate
  • • 110 grams milk chocolate chips
  • • 180 ml Sugar
  • • 5 ml Vanilla extract
  • • 2 large Eggs at room temperature
  • • 7 cloves *Black/fermented garlic, chopped fine
  • • 60 ml All-purpose flour


  • • Preheat oven to 175ºC (350ºF )
  • • Line 8-inch square pan with foil or parchment, lightly buttered and extending over the pan’s edges.
  • • Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat. Add chocolate and stir by hand until melted and smooth.
  • • Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in sugar and vanilla until combined.
  • • Beat in eggs by hand, one at a time. Stir in garlic.
  • • Add flour and stir energetically for 1 full minute, until batter loses its graininess, is smooth and glossy and begins to pull away from sides of saucepan.
  • • Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until centre feels almost set, about 30 minutes. Do not overbake.
  • • Remove from oven. Let brownies cool completely in pan.
  • • While carefully holding foil or parchment, lift block of brownie out of the pan. Cut into squares. Brownies will keep well up to 4 days and can be frozen up to 1 month.


• If black (fermented) is garlic unavailable, substitute roasted garlic.




Dark Chocolate & Golden Roasted Garlic Ice Cream

Toronto Garlic Festival

Can be made with or without ice cream machine.



  • 60 ml Bittersweet chocolate direct or fair trade
  • • 1 L Cream 10% fat
  • • 8 large Egg Yolks
  • • 125 ml Sugar
  • • 30 ml Pure vanilla extract
  • • 6 cloves Ontario garlic roasted and mashed


  • • Whisk to combine the chocolate and 250 ml (1 cup) of the cream in a 2 litre (2 quart) saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining cream. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and remove from the heat.
  • • In a medium mixing bowl whisk the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually add the sugar and whisk to combine.
  • • Slowly whisk 1/3 of the cream mixture into the eggs and sugar. Pour in the remaining cream mixture while continuing to whisk.
  • • Return the mixed ingredients to the saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens slightly and reaches 78 C (172 F ). Add the garlic.
  • • Pour the mixture into a container and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Strain to remove garlic pulp.
  • • Stir in the vanilla extract. Refrigerate for up to 8 hours or until the temperature reaches 4C (40 F) or below.
  • • Pour into an ice cream maker and process for approximately 30 minutes.
  • • Serve as is for soft serve or freeze for another 4 hours to allow the ice cream to harden.
  • • To make without an ice cream machine: During freezing, every 20 minutes remove container from freezer, stir for 2 minutes, and return to freezer.
  • • To make roasted garlic: Preheat oven to 190 C (375F). Remove locally grown garlic cloves from bulb, keeping the skin on each clove. Place cloves on baking sheet and drizzle with 30 ML (2 Tbsp) neutral falvoured vegetable oil. Cook 20-30 minutes, until golden brown colour. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Squeeze roasted garlic pulp from each clove into a small bowl. Squeeze out the pulp through the pointy end of the clove. mash with a fork, ad set aside.