Garlic Mayo (Toom)

This is a close replica of the garlic mayo found at just about every Lebanese café, restaurant, hole-in-the-wall or kebab joint. I got the method  from Fouad’s awesome blog. Fouad is a (brilliant) Lebanese man who lives and blogs from Australia; his razor-sharp wit is worth the detour, so do check him out. The only thing about Fouad that makes me sad is that he is a prime example of the brain drain that is one of the many tragedies that have befallen Lebanon: Australia will benefit from him but Lebanon won’t!

If you refuse to use a raw egg, fine, I have another post that uses only garlic, lemon juice and oil, here.


  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
  • dash of salt
  • 2/3 cup of canola or other vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 Tablespoon of ice water


  1. Peel the cloves of garlic and place in a blender or mini food processor with salt and a teaspoon of lemon juice.
  2. Whirl the blender till the garlic is chopped in tiny pieces; add the egg white and process for 2 minutes or until the mixture is white, fluffy and homogenous.
  3. Add the oil in a thin stream, slowly, through the feed tube on top, until the mixture takes on some body.
  4. Add the lemon juice slowly along with the oil.
  5. Add a tablespoon of ice water (optional). Serve.

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  1. Joanne T Ferguson
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    G’day! I am really enjoying following your blog! I was wondering about how long would this stay in the fridge! Thank you

  2. Joumana
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    Joanne: I would not keep it past 5 days.

  3. Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    A healthy version of mayo……I like to add garlic in the sauce…so this would be the ONE for me.

  4. Lazaro
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful garlic mayo. I can think of countless uses for it. Thank you for sharing.

    Love the look of your blog. Great job!


  5. Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    Voilà une recette bien sympathique, de plus j’adore le mélange du tout !

  6. Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

    wow it looks just like the store bought one…infact much better than that, lovely garlic flavoured mayo..thanks for the recipe…

  7. Posted June 5, 2010 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Dear Joumana – LOVE garlic mayo – I especially dig it with a really good, right off the stove Spanish omelet with potatoes. BTW, your post on Russian salad made me smile – Mum and I always made it when company was over….Good old times :)

    Ciao, Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  8. Posted June 6, 2010 at 12:27 am | Permalink

    I adore garlic mayonnaise and love it with almost anything from grilled fish to potatoes or even over salad. This is the first mayo recipe I’ve seen that uses the white of an egg rather than the yolk!

  9. Posted June 6, 2010 at 12:53 am | Permalink

    J’ai déjà visité le blog de Fouad et il est très bien fait.
    Une “mayonnaise ” que je ne connaissais pas du tout.
    Je l’inscris sur mes tablettes.
    Bon dimanche Joumana.

  10. Posted June 6, 2010 at 1:56 am | Permalink

    It is really sad when inspired people of all fields have to leave their home-land and exercise their talents somewhere else. Same happened and still happens in Greece. This mayo looks very nice but since I am a little bit afraid of the raw egg I will take the “eggless” version.

  11. Posted June 6, 2010 at 4:20 am | Permalink




  12. Posted June 6, 2010 at 5:08 am | Permalink

    I love toum. If I smother them on grilled chicken and on lebanese bread. If I have it in the fridge I smother it on anything that I am nt completely satisfied with and it makes it better. Yum

  13. Posted June 6, 2010 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    So very easy – and especially appealing for someone like me who is a bit of a garlic addict! It’s nice to have fresh condiments and toppings that you make yourself.

  14. Posted June 6, 2010 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    Went back and checked the last post, Joumana. I LOVE that salad! Think I’d include both the potatoes and beets (perhaps why it’s called Russian?). Yum on that garlic mayo.
    I went over to Fouad’s blog….enjoyed my visit very much. Thanks for the tip!

  15. Posted June 6, 2010 at 6:16 am | Permalink

    Hi Joumana, Dropping by to say thanks for visiting my blog! And I found homemade mayo! How lovely! I didn’t know it’s so simple to make mayo!

  16. Posted June 6, 2010 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    I love garlic so much, I can bathe in that stuff. Yummy!

  17. Posted June 6, 2010 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Thats an interesting mayo, looks yum!

  18. Posted June 6, 2010 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    This sounds so flavorful and versatile – yum!

  19. Posted June 6, 2010 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    I would like to make french fries and dip them in your garlic mayo, it looks so yummy!

  20. Posted June 6, 2010 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    Nothing beats the lebanese toum :)

  21. Posted June 6, 2010 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    As much as I love mayo, I rarely use it as it is quite fattening. Never tried adding garlic to it though.

  22. Posted June 6, 2010 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Mmm, there is not, in this whole world, something that is “too garlicky.” Is there?? Love this.

  23. Posted June 6, 2010 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    I am loving this! Delicious.

  24. Emil
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    G’day from hot and sunny Beirut. Hi Joumana I just wanted to say I have been making toom with egg whites since I bought my first Bamix hand blender back in 1987. I too got my inspiration when I saw a demonstration on how easy it was to make mayonnaise with the Bamix hand wand. But yeah it is the best recipe for the humble toom.
    Put it on some Lebanese pita bread and chuck it on da BarBe for a minute or two for the best garlic bread.

  25. Posted June 6, 2010 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    I can think of lots and lots of ways to use this mayo. Thank you for sharing!

  26. Posted June 6, 2010 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    This sounds wonderful and it will be made in my kitchen very soon. I’m about to head out to visit the blog of your friend. I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  27. SYLVIA
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    This is the classic Lebanese tattoo for chicken. I never attempted making it, I wasn’t sure what went in it, I always asked myself was it a potato that held it together? , And always bought it ready made from Zankou chicken here in LA,
    Thank you Joumana, for showing me how to make this awesome garlic sauce. Everyone will absolutely love the homemade version. It is definite keeper, and is permanent addition to my recipe file..

  28. Posted June 6, 2010 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    When I was in the Middle East I noticed that the mayo in Syria was different (and super delicious!) than what I was used to — I wonder if it’s because there’s no egg yolk in it? I can’t wait to make this…thanks for another great recipe!

  29. Posted June 6, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    This would be amazing with some Pomme Frites!

  30. Posted June 6, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    This looks lovely – so flavorful and light. I bet it’s great not just on kebabs but even drizzled over veggies, like grilled asperagus. Yum!

  31. Posted June 6, 2010 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    Très tentante cette mayo à l’ail. Bonne soirée et merci de t’être arrêtée chez moi.

  32. Posted June 6, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I love making mayo, especially with garlic. Yours looks so perfect and delicious.

  33. Posted June 6, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    SImple things with so much taste!

  34. Posted June 6, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    I seem to digest ‘La fleur d’ail’ (garlic flower)…so much more than the typical raw garlic…even if I take the middle part out. I would definitely leave your wonderful recipe alone for the rest. The only thing I would probably do in fear of some e.coli possibility is to pre-freeze the egg white in a small mason jar before using it.
    I’m so glad you shared this very versatile ‘Toom’ with us ;o)
    I will also check out your friend’s blog very soon also. Thanks.
    Flavourful wishes, Claudia

  35. Posted June 6, 2010 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

    Thanks so much for putting this up! You’re a darling!
    I was trying to comment yesterday but my internet connection kept dying on me.
    Can’t wait to try this out.

  36. Posted June 6, 2010 at 11:38 pm | Permalink

    To anyone out there who is waffling on the raw egg decision: just try it. It really is worth it and makes all the difference. You need raw egg to get mayonnaise, otherwise it just isn’t the same.

  37. Posted June 7, 2010 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    Nice garlic mayo! Looks yummy!!

  38. Posted June 7, 2010 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    Arabic food would be nothing without this toum. I love it. I make sandwiches from toum with pitta bread and just gobble it down!

  39. Posted June 7, 2010 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Hi Joumana,
    I liked this post. I make garlic mayo too, except I use the whole egg. The yolk gives it a yellowish colour and, I think, a richer flavour.
    What I most liked about this last post, though, was the link to Fouad’s site, which I’m really enjoying reading through. Thanks for that.
    Best wishes from Gib,

  40. Posted June 7, 2010 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    Very interesting and health-wise…no yolks in here and I’m thinking I’d like to scoop some of this aoli in your shrimp!

  41. Ed Habib
    Posted June 7, 2010 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Yes, it is wonderful with Chicken or Pomme Frites (Frence Fries). I make it often and never use the egg.
    My favorite use is in a fried eggplant (batenjain) and cauliflower(arnabeet) sandwich

  42. Posted June 8, 2010 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    wow! it’s sooo creamy. I’ve got to try it. Does it keep for a while? Or does it collapse pretty quick?

  43. Joumana
    Posted June 8, 2010 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    @Pierre: no it does not collapse and it keeps for a few days refrigerated.

  44. Posted June 8, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    This is also a favourite in my country. Love it over my fries. I never thought to make my own before. I will have to remedy that.

  45. Posted June 8, 2010 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

    A healthier mayo and great recipe to use those leftover egg whites.

  46. Posted June 9, 2010 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    I tried and love your other Thoum recipe with egg – so i will give this one a try too. I am sure the result will be great – all your recipes turn out nicely for me!

  47. Posted June 10, 2010 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    Ahh….timing is everything. For the last week of competition in this year’s Food52, the challenge is for the best use of a grill, thyme and lemon. When my wife heard the news she said, “you must make Shish Taouk with some Toum”. We came up with our own yogurt marinade for the chicken, but struggled to find a toum recipe that we liked. Lo and behold, we found Fouad’s recipe in a couple of spots, and if it is endorsed by you, then I am sure it will be great. We’ll be making this tonight…can’t wait. Have a great trip to Beirut. – S

  48. Posted June 10, 2010 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    Hi Joumana

    I am so touched by your blog entry. Thank you for your kind words. Hopefully one day I can go back to Lebanon, and deposit in the brain fund :) But for now, I guess Australia has a lot to teach me too.

    So you liked the toum? I hope your readers have enjoyed this recipe. It’s so easy, and delicious. Your photos look fantastic! And the recipe is great, if I may say so myself :P

  49. Posted June 14, 2010 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    I have literally been aching to get this recipe. I love Toom. I will be making this very soon.

2 Trackbacks

  1. By Shish Tawook sandwich (Chicken & fries in pita) on January 23, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    [...] For a detailed recipe on how to make toom, click here. [...]

  2. [...] For a detailed recipe on how to make toom, click here. [...]

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