10 January 2007

All aiolis are defective?

Here's an interesting summary of some recent research from Harold McGee's food blog

...citrus aromatics break apart the molecules of the olive oil, and release free oleic acid. Free oleic acid is a defect in olive oils. It can have an irritating effect in the mouth, and it destabilizes emulsions like mayonnaise. So an oil flavored with lemon may have a lovely aroma, but it can be less pleasant in the mouth or in a sauce.

Now I'm inspired to try out a semi-blind taste test of citrus emulsions. I've never noticed an odd mouth-feel from lemon aiolis, but maybe that's just because I'm so used to it. So this weekend I'll put together a standard aioli, one with canola oil subbing for the olive, and a hollandaise.

The hollandaise is cheating, obviously, but any excuse to make it is a good one!


Angela said...

You make your own aioli and hollandaise? Your wife is a lucky, lucky woman! I'm lucky if I can get a boyfriend to nuke me a pizza pop.