1tablespoonnon-iodized salt (Kosher salt or sea salt)
1cup water (bottled water, preferably, for less mineral)
For the soy brine:
3tablespoonssugarUse more for sweeter pickles
1-quartjar with a lidThe photo above shows two batches.
Separate the garlic cloves from the bulbs. Soak in hot water for 30 minutes or longer. Soaking the garlic helps the skins come off easily. Peel and remove the root ends with a small knife. Rinse and drain. Add to the jar.
Stir the vinegar brine ingredients together until the salt is dissolved. Pour over the garlic cloves. The liquid should fully cover the garlic cloves. Let stand at room temperature for 7 to 10 days or longer without exposure to sunlight. (See note 1)
Bring the soy sauce, sugar and water a boil, and gently boil for a minute over medium heat. Pour in the vinegar. Drain the vinegar brine from the jar. Pour the soy brine, while still hot, over the garlic cloves.
Make sure all the garlic cloves are fully covered. Close tightly with a lid, and let stand at room temperature for 2 weeks without exposure to sunlight (see note 1). The garlic can be eaten at this point, but it will taste better as it matures. Refrigerate after opening. The garlic cloves will keep for a few months or longer. (See note 2.)
Keep the jar at a cool place without exposure to sunlight. I keep it in a kitchen cabinet that I don't have to open frequently.
You can use the garlic infused vinegar brine in anything that uses vinegar, but be aware it's been diluted with water and quite pungent. The garlic infused soy brine can be used as a dipping or seasoning sauce.