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..