Lebanese Garlic Dip AKA Toum


IMG_3086Sometimes, ignorance is not bliss.

Let me take a few steps back… I was 24, and I thought I knew chicken and potato. Roasted, fried, boiled; take out or dine in. In fact, chicken and potato makes up a large part of the staple diet of most single young men. Simple, right? No. And what brought on this Eureka moment? My first Lebanese barbeque.

Now there are a thousand things to say about Lebanese cuisine, most of them overwhelmingly good. But I’m going to focus on one particular thing: Lebanese garlic, also known as 'toum'. This delicious and dangerous condiment forever changed my life, and ultimately changed my understanding of chicken and potato. No barbecue is the same without it. And even when you promise yourself to stay away from it, you simply cannot let the grilled potato finale go by without some toum on the side.

The single thorn attached to this beautiful rose? A minute on the lips, three days on the breath. Enjoy.


Garlic dip AKA Toum

You will need 1 cup freshly peeled cloves of garlic (the fresher the garlic, the better!) Enough water to fill the cup that holds the garlic 1 teaspoon of salt 1 spoon of citric acid (or the juice of one lemon) 1 cup of vegetable oil

In a food processor, blend the garlic, water, and salt until pureed.

Slowly add half the oil in a very thin stream - be sure to add the oil in at a very slow rate, otherwise the garlic will coagulate and the dip will split.

Add the citric acid and allow to blend for abut one minute. (if you are using fresh lemon, add 2 tablespoons at a time, at each step going forward)

While the processor is still on, add the rest of the oil in a thin stream.

Keep the processor on and allow to emulsify for 2 minutes.

The consistency should be thick, creamy in texture and fluffy. Regardless, if it's a little thinner than anticipated, it'll still taste amazing on those grilled taters. Enjoy!