Word of the Day – Wednesday, February 6th



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AIOLI (EYE-oh-lee)

A Mediterranean sauce made of garlic and olive oil
Common clues: Garlicky sauce; Garlic mayonnaise; Garlicky spread; Pungent mayo

Crossword puzzle frequency: 2 times a year
How to make aioli

Aioli or aïoli is a Mediterranean sauce made of garlic and olive oil and, in some regions other emulsifiers such as egg. The sauce's names mean "oil and garlic" in Catalan and Provençal. It is particularly associated with the cuisines of the Mediterranean coasts of Spain (Valencia, Catalonia, Murcia and eastern Andalusia), France (Provence), and Italy (Liguria). French-Provençal versions of the sauce are typically closer to a garlic mayonnaise incorporating also egg yolks, and lemon juice, whereas the Spanish versions is without egg and has considerably more garlic. This gives it a more pasty texture, as well as making it considerably more laborious to make. There are many variations, such as adding lemon juice or other seasonings. In France it can include mustard. It is usually served at room temperature.

Aioli is, like mayonnaise, an emulsion or suspension of small globules of oil and oil-soluble compounds in water and water-soluble compounds. In Spain, purists consider that the absence of egg is what distinguishes aioli from mayonnaise, however this is not the case in France and other countries where egg and egg yolk can be used as an emulsifier and is generally used in making aioli today. Using only garlic as an emulsifier requires it to be thoroughly crushed and for oil to be add drop by drop so that the aioli is not "cut" by excess oil.

Since the late 1980s, it has become fashionable to call all flavored mayonnaises "aioli", with flavorings such as saffron, chili. However, purists insist that "flavored mayonnaise can contain garlic, but true aïoli contains no seasoning but garlic".

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Aioli".