Mayonnaise is a great cookery staple to learn, it's the base of lots of great sauces. As a child, my favourite dish was steamed cod with boiled carrots and potaoes with lashings of homemade mayonnaise and lots of salt & pepper! That I could eat every day!
An aioli is just garlic mayonnaise.
For this recipe I confit the garlic first in olive oil so the taste of garlic is much more subtle.
You will need:
4 cloves of garlic peeled
Enough olive oil to cover in a small saucepan
2 egg yokes
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon french mustard
salt & pepper
150ml sunflower oil
Firstly, prepare your garlic. Do this in advance so the oil and garlic are cold before you use them. You can do this and keep in sealed jar in your fridge.
Mix egg yokes, mustard, lemon juice, salt & pepper in a bowl.
Using an electric handwhisk combine all the ingredients. Place your bowl on a teatowel so you have a hand free for pouring the oil, the bowl will stay in place on the teatowel.
Very very slowly start to whisk and drizzle the sunflower oil a little at a time whilst whisking all the time. Once the emulsion starts to take, you can add more. When you are about half way through, add some of the garlic infused olive oil.
You will see the aioli lighten and thicken in texture, keep going. Should your mayonnaise split (ie become very oily, add a couple of tablespoons of warm water and continue to whisk)
When you start to see the ripples stay firm when you stop whisking, then you're done!
Chill this in the fridge, when you serve it, it needs to have a firm consistency and not runny.
Of course, if you are making a plain mayonnaise, just don't add the garlic!
But you could add capers, parsley & cornichons to make a tartar sauce. Basil or dill to go with fish. Tarragon for chicken. If you wanted to add this for a potato salad, just mix in some plain yoghurt to lighten it up.
We served this on a blisteringly hot day, with artichokes and a very chilled rosé!