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Jun 14, 2013 03:35 AM

Favorite uses for homemade Toum? Raw or cooked?

I love Toum and think I am going to give homemade Toum a try this weekend. It's great on traditional style Lebanese dishes but do you have any other favorite uses for it? I've usually been served it as a dip or a sauce, but have you had any success heating it? I thought baked chicken with Toum would be nice and planned to coat the chicken and bake but didn't know if it would do something in particular to the flavors or the emulsion and it would be better to just serve it on the side.

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  1. you can coat the chicken with it, but why not just rub the chicken with oil and garlic? i like to serve toum on the side, and wrap the chicken with toum and beet-turnip pickles in lavash. heavenly.

    3 Replies
    1. re: alkapal

      How do you make your beet-turnip pickles?

      1. re: bcc

        bcc, here is a recipe:

        this particular recipe is from an iraqi author, but the pickle is eaten in lebanon, too. i think many other mid-eastern countries use this pickle, as well as other pickled vegetables. i am currently exploring persian cuisine, and like its range of pickles.

        1. re: alkapal

          Thanks a lot. I'll be sure to try it, since my other attempts have always seemed to suffer from unwanted fermentation.

    2. A few times I had leftovers that I used up in a vinaigrette for salad. Toum gives a less pronounced taste than garlic.

      1. On grilled lamb or beef is our favorite way. We make buckets of toum at home. The blender whip method turns out the best consistency for us. Spread on warm bread toum is amazing. spread on anything really...grilled artichokes comes to mind.

        12 Replies
        1. re: HillJ

          I actually first discovered CH when I had toum at zankos in LA... My first try wasn't very successful, some sort of garlic and lemon concoction with addition of potato, not to mention I used a chopper that probably wasn't powerful enough.

          Anyway can you share how you do it? I'm guessing minced garlic in blender, salt, oil, and lemon? Do you whip with water to lighten it? I shake up my own lotion with addition of oil and sometimes add water so it's lighter...


          1. re: youareabunny

            absolutely! I've never heard of a potato addition. hmm, but in LA you can buy toum on nearly every mom & pop convenience store and they all get it from the same local distributor who uses the follow method but in an industrial machine. So I'm sharing the at home version using a blender.


            Read through the entire process (old & new) beforehand. Have all your ingredients ready to go. Don't fear the egg white you're going to refrig what you don't use--and trust me you're going to use the whole batch!!

            So good!

            1. re: HillJ

              What's the best way to store it if you don't use the whole batch?

              1. re: fldhkybnva

                In the cold spot of your frig. But I'd recommend using it in 3 days tops because the toum changes from a tasty light spread to an air puddle.

                1. re: HillJ

                  OK, thanks. There are only a couple of us so maybe I can halve it

                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                    Just my own fyi..I haven't had success halving the recipe. Or, not following the directions as written to the tee. Something happens to the overall consistency. But if it works for you, let me know.

              2. re: HillJ

                Thank you very much! I had already read and bookmarked that page and am glad that it has gotten approval from a CHer. I was trying to avoid egg white but it's worth a shot.

                Vampires won't like me this weekend!

                1. re: youareabunny

                  If the egg white doesn't bother you, you should be happy with the results. I've made it without egg whites before and wasn't at all happy with the consistency of the spread. And the blender whipping away is key here. Be sure to let the blender do the job.

                  1. re: HillJ

                    I will certainly try it with the egg white. I hear that Zankou's is simply oil, garlic and lemon, but considering the volumes that they produce and the industrial equipment they use, it is understandable that they can achieve such consistency... but maybe they do use some sort of thickening or emulsifying ingredient. Who knows?!

                    Hope I don't burn out my blender!

                    1. re: youareabunny

                      If you have a food processor, using the paddle blade and follow the same procedure.

                      1. re: HillJ

                        I followed the recipe without egg white and I believe it was a success! I halved the recipe which was risky but it came together, although more gelatinous than creamy smooth. But I think a few stirs before serving will solve that.

                        I stopped once I smelled burning plastic. So my food processor (black and decker) may be injured or near destroyed but I believe it was worth it.

          2. You can use the toum to baste your chicken, but any kind of heat is going to alter the flavor of the garlic. Essentially you're just baking the chicken with a garlic and olive oil baste.

            Raw you can use the dip as a side to any grilled meat. I like it on rice and really it can be used to perk up anything that needs a hit of garlic.

            1. I've put it on fried rice. I think it's good on most savory foods.