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Aioli On Fridays in Provence

Despite what we might be led to believe by master chefs and Michelin-starred restaurants, traditional Provencal food was simple fare. It should be no surprise why the “Mediterranean diet” is so healthy; for practical reasons such as climate, and the fact that most inhabitants were destitute they ate food in season, sourced locally, naturally low-fat (there was little dairy) and often foraged.

Le grand “Aïoli” Provençal is served with steamed vegetables, salted cod and potatoes. Making the garlic mayonnaise is the most complicated part of this recipe. That is unless you wish to re-hydrate the salt cod a process that removes the excess salt by soaking the fish in fresh water for up to 15 hours (changing the water 2-3 times). Or, you can just buy cod from your local fish store.

Follow this link to read the original post by Ginger and Nutmeg and find out why you might want to make this traditional Provencal dish next Friday (or any other day).

Aioli Recipe #TastesofProvence @GingerandNutmeg

Aioli from Provence

Aïoli is the name of a garlic mayonnaise. Aïoli is also a traditional Provencal dish that was typically served on Fridays. The classic dish le grand “Aïoli” Provençal is served with salted cod and potatoes.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Condiment, Main Dish
Cuisine French, Provencal
Servings 6 People

Ingredients
  

  • 40 Large Shrimp peeled (tails on) and cleaned
  • 12 Medium Carrots peeled and cut in half
  • 1 Medium Cauliflower remove the leaves and cut in bite size pieces
  • 6 Small Artichokes outer leaves removed
  • 25-30 Green Beans wash and remove the ends
  • 3 Large Egg Yolks
  • 3 1/2 cups (1L) Canola Oil
  • 1 Lemon slices for the platter and an optional squeeze for the sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 Garlic Cloves crushed
  • To Taste Salt and Pepper

Instructions
 

Prepare the Garlic Mayonnaise:

  • Separate the eggs yolks and discard the whites
  • Add the crushed garlic
  • Beat the eggs with a hand mixer on medium heat while slowly adding the canola, it will take a few minutes for the blended ingredients to start to create some volume.
  • Be patient
  • Add the olive oil, salt and pepper at the end, mix well

Prepare the ingredients and the serving platter:

  • Start several pots of boiling water on the stove top
  • Poach the shrimp until they are pink (3-4 minutes), remove from heat, drain and put aside
  • Boil the carrots until tender, remove from heat, drain and put aside
  • Steam the green beans until tender (about 6-8 minutes), drain and put aside
  • Steam the cauliflower until tender, drain and put aside
  • Boil the artichokes for about 15 minutes, cut in half, remove the inner heart, put aside
  • When all the ingredients are ready you can arrange on a serving platter and serve
  • Enjoy!

Notes

This meal is not complicated, other than the timing. You can change the ingredients depending on what is in season. As the weather cools you can serve the vegetables and seafood warm. A classic Aïoli is much like a fondue, it should take time to savour.
Note: The recipe (above) uses shrimp instead of cod. You can use both or choose whichever you prefer, the traditional version would use cod.
Optional ingredients: boiled eggs, boiled new potatoes, red and yellow peppers.
Note: there is much debate over the best aioli sauce and how to make it. Each cook has their preference...by hand, by mixer, with a squeeze of lemon or not. Have some fun and enjoy.
 
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Carolyne Kauser-Abbott

Carolyne Kauser-Abbott

With her camera and laptop close at hand, Carolyne has traded in her business suits for the world of freelance writing and blogging. Her first airplane ride at six months of age was her introduction to the exciting world of travel.

While in Provence, Carolyne can be found hiking with friends, riding the hills around the Alpilles or tackling Mont Ventoux. Her attachment to the region resonates in Perfectly Provence this digital magazine that she launched in 2014. This website is an opportunity to explore the best of the Mediterranean lifestyle (food & wine, places to stay, expat stories, books on the region, travel tips, real estate tips and more), through our contributors' articles.

Carolyne writes a food and travel blog Ginger and Nutmeg. Carolyne’s freelance articles can be found in Global Living Magazine, Avenue Magazine and City Palate (Published Travel Articles).

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