Aioli is the creamy, garlicky mayonnaise of Provence, traditionally made in a mortar and pestle. But the food processor makes this a quick, easy delight. Add a hit of fresh basil, and it is a fresh summer tomato’s best friend. Good on a simple sandwich or just spread on a thick slice. It also makes an amazing dip for a beautifully colorful display of summer vegetables.
I know you will be tempted, but do not skip the step of blanching the basil. It brings out the flavor of the basil, and prevents it from turning black and unattractive when being chopped. I find it easiest to leave the leaves on a stem and simply dip it in the boiling water. And the pot isn’t dirty, just rinse it out. I use a mix of olive and canola oil, because I find that using olive oil alone masks the fresh basil flavor.
Fresh Basil Aioli
1 stem of basil, with at least six big leaves
1 small clove garlic
1 Tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup canola oil
Bring a small pot of water to a boil. When it is at a nice rolling boil, dip the basil stem in and count to 20. You’ll start to smell a nice wafting basil fragrance. Pull it out, then place on a paper towel and squeeze out the moisture. Pull off six large leaves and place in the bowl of a food processor.
Put the garlic clove through a press, or very finely chop it with a sharp knife, pressing it to almost a paste. Place it in the food processor with the basil, add the egg, lemon juice and salt. Pulse until the basil is chopped and the mixture is creamy. Turn the processor on and drizzle in the oils (measure them together in one measuring jug). Process until the mixture is creamy, thick and emulsified. You will actually hear the food processor change sounds from smooth blending to a wet slapping sound.
When the aioli is thick, scrape it into a container, cover it tightly and refrigerate for at least two hours to firm up and allow the flavors to meld. The aioli will keep covered in the fridge for three days.
Makes 1 ¼ cups
Jackie @Syrup and Biscuits says
What a beautiful platter of veggies. Thanks for the tip about blanching the basil!
The Runaway Spoon says
Blanch basil before making pesto too – it will be beautifully bright green and keep the fresh basil flavor.
Thank you such a delightful mayo You think grape seed oil mix olive would be ok?
The Runaway Spoon says
Grapeseed oil will absolutely work! Thanks!
I always make this fabulous recipe to dip with baked mushroom fries.
I found this too salty and will cut back next time, but overall beautiful and delicious and easy. I also blanched the garlic because raw garlic bothers my stomach. Had to use all olive oil, and it made me wonder about the t the reason for half olive and half canola. Was great with halibut — I smeared it on top and baked. Steamed veggies, and next day egg salad. A myriad of possibilities.