After my son made me an amazing umami burger following Adam Fleischman's recipe (June 2011 Food & Wine) recently, we now have lots of umami already made. To the basic recipe I have added some arame (sea vegetables). I love aioli with a dark fatty fish, especially bluefish. I also love aioli with pomme frites, but I am serving the fish with a warm bliss potato salad and a side of Asian slaw. This makes for a very affordable delicious whole meal. The aioli recipe follows the steps for the old bay type of aioli which Amanda explains and demonstrates so well. I add lots of particular fresh herbs at the end of my version. —Sagegreen
@ 1 cup
crumpled dried kombu
dried shitake mushrooms
pinch of Maldon salt flakes
room temperature farm fresh large egg yolk
grapeseed or canola oil
garlic clove, smashed and mashed
umami spice powder
bruised and minced fresh dill
bruised and minced ramp greens or chives and scallions
In a spice or clean coffee grinder add all the ingredients. Pulse until you create a dusty powderlike spice blend. Store in an airtight spice bottle. You can use this to enhance fish or beef among many other foods.
If you have forgotten to take out your egg or your house is just darn freezing, then set the egg in warm water for a few minutes. Then in a bowl resting on a tea towel (thanks, Food52 for the tip) whisk the yolk, vinegar, garlic and a tiny splash of the grapeseed or canola oil.
As you continue to whisk away with your better hand, slowly pour a thin stream of the same oil into the bowl. The mix should fluff up and pull together. At this point you can exhale and switch over to the olive oil. In the same fashion pour a slow steady stream into the bowl as you whisk like a dervish. Add the spice. Taste and adjust the acidity and salt level if needed.
Spritz the finely minced herbs with lemon juice. Stir in the combination to the aioli. Now sigh with both relief and pride. Go grill up 4 bluefish steaks and dinner will be ready in less than 10 minutes. This recipe will also work well with tuna or salmon if you are not a fan of bluefish. Have your slaw and warm potato salad waiting in the wings.