Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Sometimes green is good - basil aioli

I made this sauce by serendipity. A few days ago, I made a basil vinagerette: zest and juice of a lemon, a bunch of basil leaves and olive oil blitzed into a smooth green emulsion to dress some cooked chicken fillets. Of course, in order for my hand blender to do its job efficiently, I had to make a quantity that far exceeded the amount required so I was left with a jar of mentioned dressing sitting in the fridge.

Yesterday, I made an aioli and decided to use the vinagerette in place of oil and the result, an unctuous pastel-coloured sauce flecked with dark green - a hint of aniseed from the basil and heady with garlic.

Serve it simply and unapologetically with boiled potatoes.

basil aioli
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup light olive oil
1 tsp dijon mustard
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 large juicy garlic cloves
1/2 cup picked basil leaves
salt and pepper to taste
(makes 1 cup)
blend oil, zest, juice, garlic and basil until the leaves are all chopped up and you have a green oil that is smooth-ish in consistency.
decant green oil into a little jug
whisk egg yolk with dijon mustard until combined
drizzle green oil into the yolk gradually, whisking continuously until a thick emulsion is formed
season with salt and pepper to taste

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