Skordalia is a garlicky dip in Greek cuisine that is made by combining a lot of garlic with a base, which can be mashed potato, wet bread, crushed almonds, or a mixture of either, that is then beaten with a lot of olive oil to create a smooth emulsion. Some people add a bit of vinegar, or lemon juice as well. The sauce is traditionally eaten with deep-fried salted cod ‘bakaliaros’ (recipe here), but it also goes great with grilled vegetables, other types of fish, and even meat.
I’ve noticed that the Greeks have very strong opinions about whether to use bread or potato as a base for skordalia; one camp prefers the texture and flavour of potato over the more gloopy wet bread, while the others swear the sauce can only be made with bread, stating the other is merely mashed potato with garlic. I like either version, but have a slight preference for potato (sorry, team bread!)… all I really care about in the end is a strong garlic flavour. My recipe below is for a relatively strong-flavoured Skordalia, but of course you can add less (or more!) garlic depending on how strong you like it.
Skordalia (Greek Garlic Dip)
- 1kg starchy potatoes
- 10 cloves of garlic, or less/more depending on how strong you like it
- 300ml virgin olive oil
- 60ml lemon juice
- Salt to taste
- Peel and cut potatoes into pieces. Boil potatoes in lightly salted water until soft.
- Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine garlic cloves, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Beat until the garlic has broken down into the oil.
- When potatoes are fully cooked drain potatoes and set aside for 2 minutes to let the steam evaporate.
- Transfer potatoes to the food processor with the garlicky oil. Beat until smooth. Slowly add more oil if necessary.
- Add more salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with a drizzle of olive oil on top.