Makes about 2 cups

Creamy Toum (Lebanese Garlic Paste)

Traditional Toum requires making a rather large batch to allow the oil and lemon juice to create a mayonnaise type sauce. Any attempts at a small batch always results in the two separating. Rather than wondering what to do with 4 cups of garlic sauce which is the norm for a traditional recipe, this recipe uses the neutral flavor of plain yogurt to create a creamy sauce with all the flavors of traditional Toum.

2 c plain yogurt (not Greek)
1/2 c peeled garlic cloves
1 t salt
1/2 c grape seed, sunflower or safflower oil (do not use olive oil) (Chilled in freezer for 1 hour)¼ c lemon juice

Flavor Tier 1

Place yogurt in a coffee filter lined strainer and place over a medium bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let drain for 2-3 hours. Place yogurt in a small bowl and discard whey.

Flavor Tier 2

Examine the garlic cloves and remove and discard any green sprouts. Place garlic and salt in a large food processor and process until garlic has pureed. Scrape down sides of processor several times to ensure all the small bits of garlic are pureed.

Flavor Tier 3

Turn food processor on and continue to run while adding ½ cup of oil in a very slow drizzle. Follow with a slow drizzle of 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Process until full incorporated. Add the yogurt and pulse blend. Add the remaining lemon juice.

Fill 1 cup (jelly type) jars or pint jars with the sauce. Place in refrigerator and store for up to 4 weeks.