Martha+Tom

Garlic Supreme

Loving garlic as much as I do — and I love garlic — I was briefly in heaven when I discovered at a Lebanese restaurant in Cairo a dip called thoumiya. The name presumably derives from the Arabic thoum (ثوم), which means garlic, and this dip was all about garlic — almost pure garlic, touched with lemon juice and beaten into a fluffy cloud of ecstasy.

As you can tell, I departed the Middle East with no small amount of enthusiasm for this dish. Imagine my dismay when I found no mention of it in any Middle Eastern cookbooks, and could find no information on the Internet (perhaps owing to transliteration difficulties). It was as if I had imagined the whole thing, or perhaps been tricked by a djinn.

Or so I thought, until today, when on routine provisioning trip to Kowalski’s I saw glowing out from the shelf like a red and white beacon the words “Garlic Supreme”. One look at the texture and color and I knew I had finally found that magical sauce from of my memories, courtesy of the St. Paul Flatbread Co. The first thing I did upon returning home — before even putting the groceries away — was crack this open and I was immediately transported; it was perfect, lemony, light, and above all garlicky.

It would be more in the spirit of this blog for me to post a recipe for a homemade version — and I suppose I will probably do that one day — but for the moment I am happy that I can have a small piece of heaven for just $3.99.

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2 comments on “Garlic Supreme”

  1. Kris 27 April, 2010 at 10:48 am

    That sounds wonderful! Last fall I picked up a garlic spread (I think it had a few more ingredients than yours) from one of the bread vendors at the St. Paul Farmers Market and it was fantastic. Seems like it would be relatively easy to recreate given the small number of ingredients, but when you can get it for such a reasonable price, maybe not worth the effort.

  2. Tom 27 April, 2010 at 10:54 am

    If you check out the Wikipedia article, it looks like Toum is usually made in a mortar and pestle, which might be a bit of work. You could probably make it in a food processor and get a better texture (through emulsification!) to boot. Either way, that’s still a lot of garlic to peel!

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