Homemade Aioli Sauce

Anything fatty and creamy is right up my alley - custard, cheesecake, butter, gravy. If follows, then, that I love mayonnaise. Love. But I hate manufactured pre-fab food, and love simple, cheap, quality, artisan food. Dilemma. 

Solution? Homemade Aioli!  Now, homemade mayonnaise flavored with garlic and/or herbs is called Aioli sauce. There are many varieties of this - some even including pears! My favorite recipe is made with classic herbs, making it very versatile. This sauce is amazing on sandwiches, with seafood, with steak, tossed with steamed veggies...use your imagination!

Some chemistry:  yes! science in the kitchen! my favorite. What we're really trying to do here is emulsify or blend together two things that don't really want to mix. Like oil and water. Egg yolk, lemon juice, and garlic all act as emulsifiers, which will allow the oil you mix in to break down into micro-droplets and make the yummy creamy sauce you're looking for. Cool.

Now - take your time, be wowed by science, and don't be afraid! 

Homemade Aioli

Ingredients: 1 egg yolk, 1/2 cup olive oil (or other oil you like the taste of), and 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice. Pinch of sea salt, dash of garlic powder (or mashed small garlic clove), dash of mustard powder, and 2 fresh rosemary leaves chopped finely.

You begin with an egg yolk. I like to roll the egg yolk in my (clean) hands first to remove all white, then break the yolk and letting it drain into my bowl, leaving the membrane in my fingers to throw away. Not a huge difference, but I find I get a smoother sauce that whips more easily without that membrane. 
So.  Clean bowl. One egg yolk. You may grind a garlic clove into a paste and add it now, or just add garlic powder for flavor later. Begin whipping - I do this by hand, some use a food processor or blender. Add one drop of quality olive oil, or other oil that you like the taste of, and whip whip whip. Add one drop of lemon juice, whip. Drop of oil, whip. Drop of juice, whip. 

Now you can begin to add a few drops of oil and one drop of juice, whipping all the time to keep it blended. When you see the oil separate from the creamy base- stop adding and begin whipping. If it will not come together, try adding a second egg yolk, or just scrap it and start over.
Continue blending in small increments of oil and juice until all is combined. Ta-da!

 Now - for extra flavor. Mix in your sea salt, garlic powder, mustard powder, and chopped rosemary. I like to smash the rosemary into the bowl first to release all its aromatics. 
Enjoy :)

All in all - maybe 15 minutes? Totally worth it for an amazing, gourmet sauce using ingredients you already have. Win. 

Happy Eating!

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