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This sauce can be used as a sauce, dip or garnish on falafel, kebabs, grilled salmon and raw or roasted vegetables. It also makes a great vegan replacement for mayonnaise. Toum (pronounced ‘toom’, it means “garlic” in Arabic) keeps in the fridge for up to one month so adding some garlic flavor to any meal just got a whole lot easier.


1 cup fresh cloves garlic
2 tsps. kosher salt (for table salt, use 1 tsp.)
1/4 cup fresh juice from about 2 lemons, divided
1/4 cup ice water, divided
3 cups neutral oil, such as grapeseed or canola, divided


Using a paring knife, split each garlic clove in half lengthwise. With the tip of the knife, remove the germ from each garlic clove half.

Food Processor Method: Place the de-germed garlic and kosher salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the garlic in short bursts, occasionally removing the lid to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a flexible rubber spatula, until finely minced. Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and continue processing until a paste begins to form. Add another tablespoon of lemon juice and process until completely smooth and slightly fluffy.

With the food processor running, slowly drizzle in 1/2 cup of oil in a very thin stream, followed by 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Repeat with another 1/2 cup of oil and remaining 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Continue the process, alternating 1/2 cup oil and 1 tablespoon water, until all the oil and water have been incorporated.

Mortar and Pestle Method: Depending on the size of your mortar, you may need to make the recipe in smaller batches, halving or quartering the ingredient amounts. In the mortar, combine the garlic and salt and grind until it becomes a smooth paste. Work the oil into the paste 1 teaspoon at a time. After adding 1 tablespoon of oil, work in a few drops of lemon juice. Repeat until all the oil, lemon juice and water have been incorporated.