Southern Californians may know this as the cracky side of garlic paste you get at Zankou. You may know it the white stuff on the plate next to the hummus at your favorite Lebanese restaurant. Either way, you need this in your life. It goes with *everything*. Toum can be used as a dip for warm pita bread, serve it as a sauce with chicken, or toss it with your favorite fresh grilled or sauteed veggies.
You’ll need a mortar and pestle to make this. I’m sure a immersion blender or a food processor will work, but you’ll probably have to at least quadruple the recipe so that the blades will have enough stuff to blend. I used a mortar and pestle so I can’t say how the food processor version would turn out, but the same principles apply – puree the garlic with the salt and slowly add in the oil.
Your breath will be kickin’ like Van Damme, but it’ll be worth it.
Toum (Lebanese Garlic Paste)
makes 1/4 cup (~4 servings) in 15 minutes
4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1/4 cup vegetable oil or olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
Add the garlic to the mortar with a generous pinch of sea salt. Crush until a paste forms, about 2 minutes.
Add in the oil 2 teaspoons at a time, making sure the 2 teaspoons has been fully incorporated before adding additional oil. Continue to add oil until garlic won’t absorb anymore – you may not use the full 1/4 cup. It took about 10 minutes to incorporate the full 1/4 cup.
Stir in 1/2 of the lemon juice and taste. Add additional lemon juice if desired.
Cook Time:15 minutes