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Orange-Saffron Aïoli

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Yields about 1 cup.

  • To learn more, read:
    How to Grill Shellfish
  • by Elizabeth Karmel from Fine Cooking
    Issue 100

This sauce is tailor-made for grilled mussels, but it’s good with other shellfish, too. Omit the olives if you want a more delicate flavor.

  • 1 large orange
  • Pinch saffron, threads crumbled
  • 2 large cloves garlic, roughly chopped or grated
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil; more as needed
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup pitted and finely chopped Niçoise olives
Tip:
This recipe contains a raw egg yolk; if that’s a concern, use a pasteurized egg instead.

Finely grate the zest from half the orange and then juice the orange. Put 1-1/2 Tbs. of the juice in a small bowl along with the saffron, and let sit for 10 minutes.

In a food processor, combine the saffron mixture, orange zest, garlic, and mustard and pulse until the garlic is puréed, about 15 seconds. Add the egg yolk and process for 10 seconds. With the machine running, slowly pour the olive oil and vegetable oil through the feed tube until the sauce is thick and well combined. (If you like a thicker texture, add a little more vegetable oil.) Season to taste with salt.

Refrigerate the aïoli for at least 2 hours to let the flavors marry. Fold in the olives just before serving.

Make Ahead Tips

The aïoli will keep for 1 week in the refrigerator.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : per 1 Tbs.; Calories (kcal): 130; Fat (g): 15; Fat Calories (kcal): 130; Saturated Fat (g): 2; Protein (g): 0; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 9; Carbohydrates (g): 1; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 4; Sodium (mg): 330; Cholesterol (mg): 15; Fiber (g): 0;

Photo: Scott Phillips

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