Guide my Aioli
September 23, 2008 10:25 PM   Subscribe

What do you like to do with aioli?

I just made homemade aioli for the first time, and I don't know that I can say I've truly lived before now. I need guidance as I take my first trembling steps into this new world. What shall I do with this wondrous substance?
posted by lore to Food & Drink (14 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Well, you can make a platter of vegetables, raw and/or steamed to just slightly tender, for dipping. Here's one suggestion for that.

If heart attacks are not your concern, it's an excellent condiment for steak. Mr. Padraigin may not be with us for much longer for just this reason, but he will leave us with a smile on his face.

It's great for potato salad or egg or tuna salad sandwiches (and really, it's good on pretty much any kind of fish--poach or grill a piece of fish, schmear it with aioli, ponder life's mysteries).

When I make it, the last bits usually end up on a most excellent sandwich. Bahn Mi are a neat way to twist the usual sandwich into something exceptional.

Thin it with a little good wine vinegar and it makes a nice dressing for a sturdy green like spinach.
posted by padraigin at 10:38 PM on September 23, 2008

STEAK. *drool* FRENCH FRIES. *drool*

All the other ideas are good too, but those are the best. Bless the French.
posted by web-goddess at 10:47 PM on September 23, 2008

In this book, chef Charles Phan talks about putting it in Vietnamese summer rolls (the uncooked ones with rice paper), which is a trick that the Vietnamese learned from the French, of course. I haven't tried it (although I do like dipping summer rolls in a whirred ginger vinaigrette, another delicious non-traditional marriage), but I think it would be a great way to add a little bit of fat and flavor to an otherwise very lean food.
posted by rossination at 10:50 PM on September 23, 2008

you get some focaccia bread, fry up a skinless chicken breast in italian dressing and roasted red peppers, spread the aioli and some pesto sauce on the bread and add the chicken and peppers and you've got the best chicken sandwich...mmmmmm, yum
posted by docmccoy at 10:53 PM on September 23, 2008 [1 favorite]

For starters, you might try everything outlined here. The answers sing of the delightful world of mayonnaise, good mayonnaise, fancy mayonnaise, flavored mayonnaise. I'm not even that crazy about mayonnaise, and that thread makes me want to whip up a giant bucket of the stuff. (I myself linked to Molly Wizenberg's excellent articles on mayonnaise, which should apply equally well to aioli.) Some winners, in my opinion:

- use it as a dip for crispy French fries.
- thin it with lemon juice and drizzle over asparagus.
- the cold spinach dip and the hot artichoke dip should be even better made with garlic mayonnaise than made with plain.
posted by Elsa at 10:56 PM on September 23, 2008

ARTICHOKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (and maybe asparagus!!)
posted by The Light Fantastic at 10:58 PM on September 23, 2008

I concur with blanched veggies of any sort (asparagus, artichokes, green beans, etc) and oh, heavens, yes, steak and fries; maybe stir in a little shallot and tarragon for that one. You must experience that particular beef/tater/aioli fat extravaganza, ideally with a little pile of tartly dressed greens on the side to occasionally give your palate a break so the next fatty joy bit tastes even better. Drool. Or, hell, fried anything rocks.. If you happen to make some duck fat roasted potatoes, I bet that would killer.

Also, gently poach some chicken (a whole chicken-style mix of white and dark meat is best, but boneless skinless breasts ain't bad). Chop up a massive pile of fresh basil. Chop up the chicken, stir it up with the basil, aioli, and some extra lemon juice, salt and pepper. It's some seriously fine and surprisingly elegant chicken salad.

Oooh, also, BLT. Get the loveliest tomatoes and thick cut bacon you can and spread that stuff on thick. Mmmmm.
posted by mostlymartha at 11:12 PM on September 23, 2008

Poached eggs. If you have no shame.

(I have no shame.)
posted by A Terrible Llama at 2:13 AM on September 24, 2008

With paella. So, so good.
posted by Nothing at 4:04 AM on September 24, 2008

Two words: tater tots
posted by paanta at 5:35 AM on September 24, 2008

Oh--or crabcakes. Either incorporate into the crabcakes (a lot of recipes use mayonnaise as a binder) or serve on the side.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 6:12 AM on September 24, 2008

I never have a problem with this. Aioli is the best sandwich spread in the universe. I never run out of things that I can put on tasty bread, and make super-awesome with a schmear or two of aioli. :)
posted by Citrus at 7:18 AM on September 24, 2008

I breaded and deep-fried (1) slices of plum tomato and (2) small balls of bocconcini and dipped those in aioli once, and...well, try that. Delicious.

I cringe at poached egg + aioli, but poached egg + aioli + spinach or asparagus + toast would be really nice.
posted by kmennie at 10:15 AM on September 24, 2008

My favourite pizza place makes a great mushroom pizza with aioli on top. Ultimately I'd happily skip the pizza base and just eat grilled mushrooms and aioli all day.
posted by pipstar at 7:20 AM on September 25, 2008

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