This roasted garlic aioli served with artichokes was definitely “farm to table”, since we actually went to the farm for the garlic and artichokes and brought them home to our table.
Table of contents
INSPIRED BY TRAVELING IN THE SOUTH OF FRANCE
This is one of the things we discovered while traveling and recreated when we got back home. We researched the science and techniques behind the recipe and used tips from exceptional chefs. Then we used the best ingredients we could find to create this recipe. For more ideas, see our other posts about recipes inspired by travel.
In the south of France, in the small town of Villefranche-sur-Mer, we found a restaurant with local cuisine. We were served a variety of vegetables that came with Aioli. This is a garlic sauce that was originally made by pounding garlic and salt into a paste in a mortar with a pestle and slowly adding olive oil until it became a sauce. We heard that doing it properly was a bit difficult. A mortar and pestle is used because fresh garlic that is cut with a knife or the blades of a blender tastes different and can be bitter. The blades also seem to make the olive oil taste different. The restaurant in Villefranche-sur-Mer had added an egg yolk as an emulsifier, which made it richer tasting and also easier to keep in suspension. This is not the original method, but it is traditional for this area.
FARM TO TABLE WITH ARTICHOKES AND GARLIC TO MAKE ROASTED GARLIC AIOLI
Back in California, we made our own version of aioli to serve with artichokes. We drove up the coast one afternoon and stopped at a farm stand in an artichoke field to get true ”farm to table” artichokes and garlic. Most of the artichokes grown in the United States come from Monterey and Santa Cruz where the climate is similar to the areas around the Mediterranean. These were from the cliffs overlooking the Pacific ocean above Santa Cruz.
ROASTED GARLIC AIOLI
We steamed the artichokes and made a roasted garlic aioli.
Instead of making authentic aioli, we made some changes so we could use an immersion blender. This made it possible to make the sauce in two easy minutes instead of 30 minutes of laborious effort. This could also be done with a blender.
First, we used roasted garlic instead of fresh garlic. It has a wonderful rich taste without the garlic bite. Then, we used avocado oil instead of olive oil to avoid any bitterness. So, this is definitely not authentic aioli. Next, we made it similar to mayonnaise by adding an egg and lemon juice. For some reason, a whole egg, instead of just the yolk, works better when using an immersion blender. It was also important to have all the ingredients at room temperature.
Making it right in the wide mouth jar we would store it in made it even more convenient. Added a tag and it was ready to store.
HOW THIS RECIPE FOR ARTICHOKES WITH ROASTED GARLIC AIOLI FITS IN WITH OUR PLAN TO EAT BETTER
We have listed the brands for some of the ingredients because ingredients are everything. We have found that these brands give superior results. And by using brands like Horizon dairy products and Wholesome sugar we cut our carbon footprint in half and are helping to control climate change.
We use produce from the farmer’s market or a local farm stand. Locally grown fruit makes all the difference. Farmers who sell locally choose which variety to grow based on flavor instead of how well it survives transport and storage. It is picked when ripe, often just the day before, or the day of the market, so it tastes incredible. Buying local also creates a smaller carbon footprint in transportation, and it helps our local economy, giving jobs to people in our community.
No Affiliates Statement
We call this our “no affiliates” statement because we accept no advertising, have no affiliates and accept no payment. We are not paid to mention brands – we just love buying the best, sharing that information and saving the planet at the same time. The effort put into writing and photographing the blog is solely based on our dedication to the cause.
Photos by Tony Fitzgerald Photography
- immersion blender This could also be made in a blender
- Gather all the ingredients and let them come to room temperature.
- Measure the ingredients into a wide mouth jar just large enough to get the immersion blender head in.
- Let the egg yolk settle to the bottom. Submerge the head of the immersion blender until it rests on the bottom of the jar. Holding it on the bottom, blend the mixture on low until it becomes an emulsion. Tilt the head of the blender or raise it up to incorporate all the oil. This should take a minute or two.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to a week.