It was about time I posted the basic aioli recipe – the dips of all dips. A true Spanish classic. What aioli basically is, is a mayonaisse. You have egg yolk and oil, but aioli is being flavoured differently than a classic mayonaisse, which is with garlic and lemon juice. It’s amazing as a dip for bread when you serve tapas, it goes with grilled meat and it tastes amazing with shellfish. I even use it on burgers, because I don’t like regular mayo.
If you’re still afraid of trying an aioli recipe, don’t be! If you follow a few simple tips, it’s dead easy and it will come out perfectly every time. I promise.
First of all choose your ingredients carefully. Aioli is made with olive oil and I suggest you use a high quality extra virgin oil. It will make a hell of difference taste wise (I often find cheap olive oil a bit scratchy in my throat when I eat things prepared with it). To make the process easier, take your eggs out of the fridge and let them come to room temperature for 1-2 hours.
The garlic taste is the signature of every good aioli, but if you don’t want the anti-social garlic breath the next day, roast the peeled garlic cloves in a pan with a splash of olive oil over low heat until they’re soft. You’ll still have the taste of garlic, but it’ll be less invasive for your co-workers the next day ;-)
A few words on what tools to use to make the aioli. I always like to use a tall narrow vessel, but any bowl you can comfortably whisk in is fine. For the whisking you have several options. You can use a stick blender (that’s how I started making it), but for that to work you need at least 2 egg yolks or else the stick blender won’t have enough egg to grab onto. My favourite option is an electric whisk, because it works with a single egg yolk and I can make just a small batch of aioli. If you have strong arms (which I don’t have), you can do this by hand with a simple whisk. But it’ll take a lot longer.
- 2 egg yolks
- olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 3 cloves garlic
- In a bowl, whisk up the two egg yolks.
- While whisking slowly add olive oil in a continuous very thin stream. After a couple of moments the mixture should thicken.
- Keep adding olive oil until you have the desired consistency.
- Add the lemon juice.
- Press in the garlic with a garlic press (or blend it in with a stick blender) and add salt to taste.
- Use high quality ingredients, especially a very good extra virgin olive oil.
- Let the eggs come to room temperature before making aioli.
- If you want to dial back the garlic breath the next day, slowly roast the peeled garlic cloves in a pan with a little oil over low heat, until they are soft.