For years I raved about this garlic paste from Zankou Chicken, a Lebanese fast food chain in LA, a must have whenever we’re in Southern California. This sauce which is served with their rotisserie chicken is amazing, we love it so much we’ve even brought some home with us!
It never occurred to me to try making it at home. I’d read some article about this secret sauce and assumed it was impossible to recreate, not to mention for years I’d mistakenly thought it was an Armenian restaurant and therefore a secret recipe from Armenia.
Imagine my surprise when this summer I was served the exact same creamy paste in restaurants in Jordan and Dubai and told this sauce that I love is Lebanese and is called “Toum”. When we got home my daughter and I decided to try our hand at making this yummy sauce.
Traditionally I believe the sauce is made by mashing fresh garlic with a mortar and pestle until it turns in to a creamy paste. I’m pretty sure the restaurants aren’t mashing garlic the traditional way in their kitchens, so I searched the web to see how it”s done. There are 3 modern methods using either a food processor, blender, and immersion or stick blender. It seems that the method of preparation is more important than the ingredients, after all there are just 3 ingredients. Most methods require slowly pouring in the oil to thicken the sauce, I have no patience or time to do that. There had to be a better way! Some also required a food processor or an immersion blender. I didn’t want to haul out the food processor and I don’t own an immersion blender, so I had to use my handy dandy Ninja.
So I found this recipe from Food.com. It uses a blender and doesn’t require slowly pouring the oil in. Instead it uses egg whites to thicken the sauce.
I have to admit I didn’t get the creamy paste consistency, but I came up with a sauce that is great drizzled or poured over a chicken shawarma sandwich. I will try making the paste again, maybe after I buy an immersion blender or decide to dig out the food processor. In the mean time this garlic sauce is pretty darn good! It makes even the rotisserie chicken from Costco or Sam’s Club great.
Here’s the recipe from Food.com, it’s a wonder that something so delicious is made with just 4 ingredients! Be sure to use fresh garlic not the bottled minced garlic. I was lazy and tried that, it did not turn out well.
3 cups Mazola corn oil
1 cup lemon juice
1 lg. bulb garlic – peeled (I actually used 2 bulbs, I really like garlic)
2 egg whites
1 tsp. salt
Put all ingredients in blender
Blend til smooth
Chill before serving