Punkin’ Aioli


Last week at the restaurant, I spent what felt like most of a shift rescuing split things – joking on Twitter that I felt like a Relate counsellor for aioli and custard… And to be honest, I was very excited by the whole thing, because although I’ve made a hundred custards in my little life so far, I’d never ever made my own mayonnaise. And so I made mayo, and aioli, and quince aioli – so naturally when I ended up with a large bowl of pumpkin purée in the fridge from scooped-out Halloween, I thought I’d play with my newfound aioli obsession a little bit more…

4 fat cloves of garlic
100g pumpkin purée
Juice of half a lemon
Pinch of dried red chilli
3 free range egg yolks
150ml good olive oil

First roast your garlic cloves, I cheat mine in the microwave for 10 seconds at a time, they tend to start smoking so keep an eye on them! I just can’t bring myself to turn the oven on for four poxy garlic cloves…

Anyway, heat and soften your cloves, lob into a bowl and mash well with a fork. Drain your pumpkin purée to lose some of the wetness – pop it into a fine mesh sieve or soft tea strainer and jiggle a spoon around in it to strain out some of the liquid. Tip it into the bowl with the mashed garlic, squeeze over the lemon juice, add a pinch of chilli, season and mix well.

Beat in the egg yolks – then slowly add the olive oil, beating hard all the time to incorporate. In an ideal world it should emulsify (go thick and glossy and slightly waxy) – if you have a blender or food processor, now is a good time to toss the lot in, but I like doing mine by hand as a stress-management technique and a bit of an obsession…

Pour into a jar, label, and pop in the fridge until you have some chips to dip in, or fingers, or dollop it on top of a burger…

Jack Monroe. Twitter: @MsJackMonroe

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