Corn with Black Garlic and Parmesan

by Dorothy Reinhold on November 6, 2011

Print This Post Print This Post Corn with Black Garlic and Parmesan

The last of the summer corn is always a bittersweet moment. While we look forward to the new season’s produce, the upcoming holidays and a change in weather, we also just plain mourn the corn.

Few things can match a fresh cob of summer corn, barely cooked, the milky juices bursting out with each bite. (Well, hmmm, come to think of it, a fresh summer peach can give it a run for its money.)

So I wanted to give the last summer corn a grand send-off. I had a new ingredient – aged Black Garlic – that I wanted to use, and it turned out to be an amazing combination with corn.

Black Garlic cloves on ShockinglyDelicious.comBlack garlic is both sweet and savory (how is that possible?), with a rich, molassesy, fruity flavor with a mild garlic foundation sans the usual bite from fresh garlic. It’s jet black and soft, like a clove of roasted garlic, and lends a complex flavor that you can’t quite pinpoint. If you didn’t know what it was, you might think it was rotted or spoiled only because we aren’t used to seeing matte black, super soft garlic cloves. Whatever you do, don’t throw it away!

Black GarlicThe folks at Frieda’s Specialty Produce  distribute it, and it is available in the produce department at grocery stores. Ask for it if you don’t see it, because it’s new and trendy and so very much worth the wait.

You know the term “umami?” It describes the fifth taste. Sweet, sour, salty, and bitter were long believed to be the four identified tastes. Then along came a Japanese scientist who identified a fifth taste – glutamic acid, which he thankfully renamed “umami,” which means “delicious” or “yummy” in Japanese. It’s a sort of meaty, savory taste. Soy and Worcestershire sauces have it, and so do mushrooms. Ripe tomatoes and Parmesan cheese have umami, too.

Black Garlic has it in spades!

So I took the corn and married it with Black Garlic and Parmesan for an explosion of umami proportions.

See for yourself. You might want to serve this as a Thanksgiving side dish. I will.

Recipe: Corn with Black Garlic and Parmesan

Summary: The last of the summer corn gets star treatment in a bath of garlicky olive oil and Parmesan. Rich, fruity, savory Black Garlic gives is a complex taste with loads of umami. This is perfect with roast chicken or turkey (Thanksgiving, anyone?).


  • Corn with Black Garlic and Parmesan on ShockinglyDelicious.com5 ears fresh corn, shucked (about 3 cups kernels)
  • 4 cloves Black Garlic
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Cut the kernels off the corn cobs and put into a microwave-safe container with a lid. You should have about 3 cups of corn (amount is not strictly important; a little more or less is fine).
  2. In a tiny food processor, whirl the Black Garlic cloves and olive oil until the garlic is very finely chopped. You may also do this step by hand mincing the garlic, or mashing it in a mortar and pestle.
  3. Stir the garlicky oil into the corn and micro cook it on high for 2 1/2 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, stir and micro cook another 1 minute.
  4. Taste to see if it needs salt and add a pinch if it does. (Some Parmesan is saltier than others, so you will need to taste it for yourself.)
  5. Stir and serve.
  6. Serves 4-5.

Preparation time: 15 minute(s)

Cooking time: 4 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4-5

Culinary tradition: USA (Nouveau)

My rating 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Other interesting recipes that use Black Garlic

Black GarlicI don’t want you to be afraid that you will buy it and never use it!

Beans and Greens with Shallots, Black Garlic and Cranberries

Black Garlic with Scallops 

Black Garlic Noodles

Fried Stuffed Olives with Black Garlic Aioli (I am going to make the aioli for sandwich spread, dip, etc.)

Black Garlic Tapenade

Pesto with Black Garlic

Frieda’s Specialty Produce provided me with Black Garlic to sample. I was under no obligation; all opinions are my own.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

karen February 24, 2012 at 3:39 pm

Thank you so much


karen February 24, 2012 at 10:23 am

do you know if black garlic is soft when you first buy iy.


Dorothy February 24, 2012 at 1:14 pm

Yes, it is soft when you buy it! It still has the skin on, but is matte black and soft inside.


lynn @ the actor's diet November 17, 2011 at 6:51 pm

i’ve never thought of corn and parm before! sounds wonderful.


Nancy Real November 9, 2011 at 9:35 pm

Wow! That corn with black garlic and Parmesan is so tempting. It looks delicious. Can’t wait to try it. Unusual mix of flavors and this is exactly what I like! Thanks.


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