Nov 1, 2010

Thoom / Garlic Sauce

         The middle eastern cuisine is popular for its innumerable verities of dips and sauces. They give an elevated interest to the unique grilled and smoked preparations of chicken and mutton, they have. This particular dip which is also known as 'Zait B Thoom' grabbed my good old attention (totally), the very first time I tasted it. Well, what came to my lips then where.. " creamy.. soft..savoury! mmm.. totally irresistible". It could be pedigreed as a colonial cousin of mayonnaise, but not as tangy. Quite mild and humble for the flavour sake... and healthier too coz it uses egg whites unlike yolks in mayonnaise. Still, how it charms the taste buds so, is a myth.

          The processing is more mythical (if you do not think scientific). The way each globule of oil incorporates in to each drop of liquid to become a totally different emulsified texture is a real wonder. Those  who are not familiar with the theory of emulsification would gape like an idiot as to how the mixture could get thicker and thicker as you go on adding oil. Your simple pretty logic tells you, the mixture should get thinner and watery as you add  liquid to it...

          While I was strolling through the web, I came across many sites which discusses the scientific theory behind the formation of mayonnaise. It was real fun seeing people 'seriously' discussing about the volume of the cylindrical vessel and the velocity of the whisk acting together to form a wonderfully uniform emulsified mixture... So who says, there are no scientists in kitchen? ;) Now let me share some of my own 'scientific' findings.. While you add oil you must add it little by little in thin streams or drops. If you add a big amount all of a sudden, you would risk breaking the emulsion. The oil would then float on top as a different layer. Also, your whisking should neither be too slow nor too vigorous. That would  break the emulsion too..
Let's have a look at the recipe..

Things you need:                                                   
4 egg whites
3 cloves of garlic
2 tbp vinegar
3 to 4 cups of vegetable oil or any salad oil
Salt to taste 

          Grind the garlic finely with a dash of salt in a mortar.Whisk or blend together the egg whites and ground garlic until frothed up. Add the vinegar and mix well. To this mixture add oil little by little while you continue whisking in medium speed. Make sure the mixture is completely emulsified and uniform before you pour more oil. If you are using an electric whisk keep the speed low. You can whisk in high speed before adding oil. You will note the mixture thickening as you go. Go on adding oil and whisking until the desired thickness is reached. If it hasn't reached the desired thickness even after adding the measured quantity, you can add more until the desired thickness is reached.

Use with peta breads or grilled chicken. Goes well with Tantoori Chicken too. Refrigerate after usage. It can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week.


  1. no i didn't.. it's at the end of 'Method'. U didn't read fully..that's why :)

  2. i i read list and saw pictures and skipped tru the method :| i thought pic was enough. u need to list it or something. atleast bolden it.
    and i always read the forward. :D its d best!

  3. It's like a healthier version of mayonnaise. Thanks for sharing this. I'd love to try this soon.

  4. Thanku fr the rcp .I ve been eating this in restaurants but nvr got the rcp.some friends asked me to add potatoes.



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