Yes, you’re thinking The Goddess has been out in the sun too much. Who ever heard of such a thing? Heresy, heresy…Anybody who knows anything about mayonnaise, knows this is not possible…except that it is. It’s milk mayonnaise. David Leite, of Leite’s Culinaria, which is one of the cooking websites I follow, and I highly recommend that you take a look-see, too. I’ve been following it for years now, and it never disappoints. David, we’re not friends and he doesn’t even know me, but I feel so warmly toward him, that I’m using the familiar here. I hope he doesn’t mind. One of the reasons I feel this way about him, is his recipe for Milk Mayonnaise. It is the basis for several dips, as well as his Portuguese Green Olive Dip. He has a great cookbook, The New Portuguese Table. You can buy it here. If you are interested in purchasing his cookbook, I would assume that if you purchase it from David’s website, he probably will get some monetary benefit from Amazon.
You can make the plain version of the mayonnaise, but this is the version I usually make. Peruvian restaurants serve an incredibly delicious sauce, which frankly, The Goddess could eat as a soup course and at times has come close to doing so. You see, she likes to dip yucca fries, well…really anything fried, in this stuff. Hell, she could bathe in this stuff! So, she combined their idea of using ajì amarillo chiles (I use the paste and the pure chile powder) and a milk mayonnaise, that is pretty close to the Peruvian sauce at some of the local restaurants.
There is one note of caution. You CANNOT use a food processor for this. It simply won’t work; it won’t emulsify; there’s too much surface area. You need to use either a standard blender or an immersion blender (a pint or quart Mason jar is perfect). The immersion blender spins slightly slower, so you may need to add a few extra tablespoons of oil to reach that perfect state of emulsion.
Peruvian Special Sauce
- 1 cup whole milk (or evaporated milk)
- 1/3 cup coarsely chopped garlic leaves or scapes (or chopped scallions)
- 1/4-1/3 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons ajì amarillo chile paste
- 2 tablespoons dried minced onions
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1-2 teaspoons pure ajì amarillo chile powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black or white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (optional–for color)
- 2/3-3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3 tablespoons good olive oil
Combine all the ingredients, except the oils in a blender container. Whirl it up on high for 30 seconds until it’s foamy and frothy.
Combine the oils; I use a squeeze bottle, like an old ketchup bottle. With the motor running on high, remove the center from the blender lid and slowly begin adding the oil a few drops at a time. Gradually increase this to a fine thread (about the size of a piece of spaghetti) until the mixture thickens and resembles mayonnaise; the mixture will be on the soft side. You may need to add slightly more. The mixture will thicken as it chills. Taste and add additional salt to taste. The mayonnaise will last up to 1 week in the fridge.
NOTE: You can use fresh, seeded ajì chiles, but they are very difficult to source in my area. I have used frozen, thawed ones, but I find the paste/powder combination works best for me. Also, if you aren’t using the garlic leaves or scapes, substitute 1 clove of garlic and scallions, omitting the dried onions. This does thicken as it stands. Excellent with roasted potato wedges, grilled anything, roasted chicken, fish, and is excellent on sandwiches, as well.
Peruvian Special Sauce Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2015. All rights reserved.
You can use fresh, seeded ajì chiles, but they are very difficult to source in my area. I have used frozen, thawed ones, but I find the combination of ajì amarillo paste and pure ajì amarillo chile powder works best for me. I find the paste in the Latino section of larger supermarkets or markets that cater to the Latino community. The pure powder is available at The Spice Mill. This chile powder has a warm heat that builds, but is never too hot, more of a glow. This chile has lovely floral and slightly fruity back flavors. The next time you make mashed potatoes, toss a little of this chile powder in…you’ll love it.
This version is a bit greener than usual. I used more cilantro than I usually do, because I was wanting that flavor more at the front this time. If you aren’t fond of cilantro, and I understand there are those among us do not have an appreciation for its earthy flavor. Did you like the way The Goddess was reasonably diplomatic there? Normally, she would say something like, “Are you crazy?” or “Have your taste buds moved and left no forwarding address?” Hmmmm…I guess she was in a mellower place today. I also took full advantage of the garlic scapes that are in season this very minute, but used the garlic leaves, instead of the scapes. My scapes had some leaves attached to them, so I thought I’d use them here. This picture shows you the garlic leaves, and that’s the ajì amarillo powder there near the bottom. You can see a bit of the paste, as it sinks into the goodness, on the center-left.
I love to use this to dip fries or roasted potato wedges into. It’s great with fish, instead of tartar sauce and it’s absolutely terrific on sandwiches. When I make my Cuban hamburgers, this is what I use for “special sauce”. By the way, those are garlic scapes in the background there.