September 6, 2015

Poblano Lime Aioli

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This slightly nippy aioli will satisfy your cravings for Southwest flavours. I use it to rev up potato salad (try Poblano Potato Salad) and to transform sandwiches from mundane to memorable. The recipe is yet another riff on miraculously fast, fluffy, fuss-free, foolproof Minute Mayo. (Link: How to make the best homemade mayonnaise and aioli.)

1 large egg, at room temperature
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
1 tbsp (15 mL) lime juice
1/2 tsp (2 mL) kosher salt
1/8 tsp (0.5 mL) ground white pepper
1 cup (250 mL) canola oil
2 medium poblano peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded, drained (juices reserved, if desired)
1 to 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped cilantro, to taste

In this order, add egg, garlic, lime juice, salt, pepper and oil to tall, narrow beaker. Place blade of immersion blender over yolk, touching bottom of beaker. Turn on blender. Once streaks of mayonnaise appear at bottom of beaker, slowly pull blender upwards until ingredients emulsify into thick, fluffy, cream-coloured aioli. If necessary, stir in any remaining small streaks of oil.

Finely chop poblanos, then mash with fork. Transfer to small bowl. Add aioli and cilantro. Combine, using fork.

Serve immediately. Or transfer to storage tub, cover and refrigerate.

Makes 1-1/3 cups (325 mL).

  • Immersion blenders are usually sold with their own beakers. If you don’t have a beaker, try a tall mason jar.
  • For best results, all the ingredients should be at room temperature. You can crack the egg into the beaker and let it acclimatize before adding the remaining ingredients, particularly the acidic lime juice.
  • You can use any neutral, refined oil. Avoid extra virgin olive oil, which turns bitter when vigorously whipped. (Why? See "Avoid Bitter Disappointment" in my Minute Mayo blog.)
  • To roast the poblanos: Broil or grill them 15 minutes, or until charred and blistered all over, turning as necessary. Place in paper bag, crumple top closed and let sit until cool enough to handle. (Or place in medium bowl and cover with plate.) Discard skin and seeds.
  • Drain the juices well from the roasted poblanos. (Save them for Poblano Potato Salad, if desired.) The poblanos should be finely chopped but still a bit lumpy. Avoid the temptation to purée them – your aioli will end up runny.
  • You can store homemade aioli in the fridge up to 4 days.

Lazy Poblano Lime Aioli
Homemade Minute Mayo is so miraculously quick and luscious, it would be a shame to substitute commercial mayonnaise. However, you could do so as a shortcut: Start with 1-1/4 cups (300 mL) mayonnaise. Full-fat mayo works best in this recipe because it is thicker, but lower-fat mayonnaise is an option for calorie-counters. Stir in 2 pressed or minced garlic cloves along with the poblanos, cilantro, salt (to taste) and pepper. Add more lime juice to taste, as commercial mayonnaise is blander than homemade Minute Mayo.

Credit: Susan Sampson
Tested in Imperial