Creamy Jalapeño-Garlic Dressing

Aderezo Cremoso de Jalapeño y Ajo
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This might seem like a lot of garlic, but once the ajo is blanched, the flavor sweetens and mellow—no raw garlic bite remains. Feel free to use another herb: basil, parsley, dill, hoja santa, a little fresh oregano or epazote—all would be welcome here.
Servings: 11/4 cups
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Ingredients

  • 1small head (10 cloves) garlic, peeled
  • 1small fresh jalapeño chile, stemmed and roughly chopped
  • 1/2cup oil
  • 1/2cup tangy crema, crème fraiche or sour cream
  • 2tablespoons fresh lime juice or light vinegar
  • Ahandful of fresh cilantro, tough lower stems cut off
  • Salt

Instructions

In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the garlic and jalapeño, cover with water and microwave for 1 minute at 100% power.  Drain and cool completely to room temperature.  Transfer to a blender jar or food processor.  Pulse until everything is finely chopped, scraping down the sides to ensure everything gets caught by the blades.  With the machine on, add the oil in a thin stream.  If the garlic is completely cool, the oil will emulsify with the garlic, creating a thick mayonnaise-like consistency.  Add the crema (or its stand-in), the lime juice or vinegar and the cilantro.  Blend until everything is thoroughly incorporated.  Taste and season with salt, usually a scant teaspoon.

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