Aioli

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What specifically is aioli? Can any sauce mayonaisse based be called an aioli or would that be incorrect?

I made a brussel sprout, Italian sausage, & bacon hash today based on a recipe I saw on today's FoodBuzz and topped it with a creamy horseradish sauce that is mayonaisse based. Can I call it an aioli?
 
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Some say it is a French sauce but I do not really know the origin for sure as my Spanish sister-in-law makes it all the time.
It is basically a sauce made with lemon, eggs, garlic, and alot of olive oil, when mixed properly (ingredients at room temp) you should get an end result looking like mayonnnaise.
Some use a mortar and pestle, other a hand mixer (each own a different technique).
I always make sure my products are at room temp to prevent curdling.
More and more places are jazzing up their Aioli with other products.

my two cents.....
 
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From "Food Lover's Companion", page 6:

"...A strongly flavored garlic MAYONNAISE from the Provence region of southern France..."
 
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Aioli is another one of those dishes that is morphing from the precise to the general.

It is, technically, a garlic mayonaisse, originating in the south of France. Nowadays you see it on menus with all sorts of qualifiers, such as "roasted red pepper aioli." But how do you reverse such trends?

In the encylopedic Sauces, James Petterson lists 15 named mayonaisse based sauces---ten classic and five modern---plus discusses variants. It wouldn't surprise me to see every one of them listed on contemporary menus as "aiolis."

We could probably construct a long list---starting with classics like Eggs Benedict---that have, unfortunately, followed this same path.
 
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1. Some aioli are not mayonnaise based at all; that is, they have no egg. However, I did some research in Spanish and found that most generically Spanish aiolis do have egg yolks (yema), but that most Catalan aliolis (note the extra "L") do not.

2. It seems there's a Roman sauce (dating from the time of the Roman empire) called aleatum which predates the Provence aioli by a millenia or so.

3. Aioli, or something so much like it as to be indistinguishable is prevalent from the Italian to the Spanish rivieras.

4. Consequently, while I regard the Frankish origin scholarship with respect, I'm also inclined to view it with a lot of skepticism, and number myself partly in the Imperial Roman camp, and partly with the French -- if only for the inclusion of egg yolk.

TMI by any standard,
BDL
 
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Thank you all for responding.

I think I was confused by the trend of places calling just about every sauce an aioli so I will just call mine horseradish sauce :thumb:
 
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A fairly common example used around here is the ceasar salad, in all its many common incantations, some of which actually resemble a real ceasar!

mjb.
 
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 Question about aioli....

Does anyone have a good fix for when your aioli comes out too thin?  Ours isn't thickening up, and we wondered if there's a fix, as opposed to starting a whole new batch.  Any tips would be helpful!
 
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 Question about aioli....

Does anyone have a good fix for when your aioli comes out too thin?  Ours isn't thickening up, and we wondered if there's a fix, as opposed to starting a whole new batch.  Any tips would be helpful!
 
Generally any emulsion will continue to get thicker the more oil it contains. The higher the oil to liquid ratio the thicker the consistency (at least until you go too far and break it!). I'd suggest using less lemon juice and egg yolk in your recipe, assuming this is for home use and you don't want to make oodles of extra.

Hope it helps!

-Theo
 
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Add more egg yolks - whisk for longer until it is thick enough.  Maybe also a bit more olive oil until the balance is right.
 
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If your serving it on an a Panini, its an aioli, if its on a bologna sandwich, its mayonnaise. Most Chefs would agree, it sounds better on a $28 Crab cake w lemon aioli...................Chef Bill
 
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Aioli is a simple mayonnaise with plenty of garlic.Very easy to make it in your kitchen if you know how to make mayonnaise. It is wonderful on vegetables, meat, potatoes, toast, on just about anything--if you love garlic. You can vary the a amount of garlic according to your taste buds.
My recipes calls for 10 cloves of garlic for 1 1/2 c oil. This yields 1 1/2 c aioli.
Enjoy!
 
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Aioli is a simple mayonnaise with plenty of garlic.
That's ONE way to make aioli, but that's not what aioli is. In fact purists will tell you that's not aioli at all, but simply "garlic mayonnaise". Aioli is an emulsion of garlic and olive oil. As BDL said before in this thread, you don't have to use egg yolk if you don't want to. In that case you're just emulsifying the garlic juices with the olive oil. The egg yolk can help the emulsification. Greeks use potatoes rather than egg yolk to help the emulsification. Some people use lemon juice.
 
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thanks to you both for the tips!  i added more oil and more egg yolk, and it thickened right up!  

Generally any emulsion will continue to get thicker the more oil it contains. The higher the oil to liquid ratio the thicker the consistency (at least until you go too far and break it!). I'd suggest using less lemon juice and egg yolk in your recipe, assuming this is for home use and you don't want to make oodles of extra.

Hope it helps!

-Theo


Add more egg yolks - whisk for longer until it is thick enough.  Maybe also a bit more olive oil until the balance is right.
 
 

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