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Simple Mustard Toum (No Lemon Juice, No Vinegar)

This low histamine sauce is a sharp, garlicky base for a variety of dishes, using mustard powder to emulsify oil & garlic into a versatile mustard aioli. Use mustard toum to top grilled meat, dress a salad, fry some broccoli, or flavor baked root veggies.

About this recipe

No Lemon Juice Toum: since many people with histamine issues don’t do well with citrus, this low histamine sauce uses ground mustard seeds to emulsify the oil and garlic, creating a mildly thick sauce traditionally served with chicken & flatbread.

Low Histamine Sauce: while very sharp in flavor by itself, this toum blends well with a bit of homemade nut butter or seed butter to make a simple salad dressing or sauce for meat.

Use up Extra Garlic: this is a great low histamine way to use up any excess garlic from a recent haul or CSA, or even a bunch you found that’s about to start going bad. It’s very versatile, and a great flavor enhancer in soups!

Ingredients

Peeled Garlic: these can be prepared yourself or purchased at an Asian market or Whole Foods near you, but it can take awhile to peel them in this quantity, so consider buying them pre-peeled.

Oil: you can use any neutral-tasting oil, but I recomment light olive oil or refined coconut oil, as tolerated (and depending on what you plan to use it for).

Mustard Seed: use the finely ground powder obtained from dried mustard seeds, not the whole seeds. This acts as an emulsifier in place lemon juice, the more traditional choice.

How to make mustard toum: step-by-step instructions

Step 1. Peel all garlic and remove any green stems in the middle (cut each clove length-wise in order to see if there’s any green).

Step 2. Add garlic and sea salt to your food processor, then pulse them for 30 seconds in five-second intervals, until well-balanced and fully minced. You’ll want to scrape down the sides halfway through.

Step 3. Add 2 teaspoons of oil to the garlic mixture, ideally while the food processor is running (or if needed then all at once and immediately run the food processor and whip), then scrape down the sides.

Step 4. Add another teaspoon or two of oil one at a time, ideally while the processor is running, and emulsify everything for 10 more seconds.

Step 5. Alternate adding a half tablespoon of the mustard powder or a tablespoon of the oil, alternating adding the sumac once the ground mustard has all been added. If you add the powders or the oil too quickly, it can break the emulsification, so carefully blend the mixture well between additions. If the emulsification isn’t too thick at the end, you may not need to add the final tablespoon of oil, so add everything slowly. Once everything has been added, your sauce is done! Careful, it’s sharp.

Recipe notes & tips

Removing Green Stems: it’s very important to remove the germs growing inside older garlic, as that’s the base for a bitter-tasting sprout that will ruin both the flavor and emulsification of your sauce.

Sweetening the Sauce: this is great for baking thanks to the high oil content, but adding a bit of honey or maple syrup would balance out the flavor even more; consider 1 Tablespoon of either per batch.

What to do with mustard toum

  • blend it with tahini to make a simple salad dressing
  • toss your brussels sprouts in it & then bake
  • smear it on crackers or bread with a bit of cream cheese (if tolerated)
  • bake your favorite cut of chicken in mustard toum, with a drizzle of honey on top
  • blend it into eggs with a bit of baby kale for a zingy morning omelet

Mustard Toum FAQ

How long does mustard toum last?

Mustard toum can last for up to one week in the fridge or up to two years if properly stored in the freezer, though it loses its emulsification once frozen.

What can I use instead of lemon juice in toum?

You could use lime juice, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, or mustard powder.

What if my toum won’t emulsify?

If your toum is still too oily, add more mustard seed powder to strengthen the emulsification.

Mustard Toum Recipe Card

As always, if you like the recipe, I really appreciate a review or comment!

Mustard Toum (Without Lemon Juice)

Mustard Toum (Without Lemon Juice)

Yield: 5oz. (10 servings)
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes

A very sharp, mildly lemony garlic spread that's a low histamine play off of the traditional Lebanese sauce.

Ingredients

  • ​1/4 Cup garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 Tablespoons ground mustard seed

Instructions

  1. Peel all garlic and remove any green stems in the middle (cut each clove length-wise in order to see if there's any green).
  2. Add garlic and sea salt to your food processor, then pulse them for 30 seconds in five-second intervals, until well-balanced and fully minced. You'll want to scrape down the sides halfway through.
  3. Add 2 teaspoons of oil to the garlic mixture, ideally while the food processor is running (or if needed then all at once and immediately run the food processor and whip), then scrape down the sides.
  4. Add another teaspoon or two of oil one at a time, ideally while the processor is running, and emulsify everything for 10 more seconds.
  5. Alternate adding a half tablespoon of the mustard powder or a tablespoon of the oil, alternating adding the sumac once the ground mustard has all been added. If you add the powders or the oil too quickly, it can break the emulsification, so carefully blend the mixture well between additions. If the emulsification isn't too thick at the end, you may not need to add the final tablespoon of oil, so add everything slowly. Once everything has been added, your sauce is done!

Notes

Removing Green Stems: it's very important to remove the germs growing inside older garlic, as that's the base for a bitter-tasting sprout that will ruin both the flavor and emulsification of your sauce.

Sweetening the Sauce: this is great for baking thanks to the high oil content, but adding a bit of honey or maple syrup would balance out the flavor even more; consider 1 Tablespoon of either per batch.

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