Pil-pil sauce

Pil-pil sauce

By
From
Finding Fire

Pil-pil sauce is one of the staples of Basque cuisine, in which the gelatine from the grilling juices, olive oil and vinegar is agitated to form a rich emulsion. Traditionally it is made by gently heating white gelatinous fish such as cod or hake in olive oil, garlic and chilli until the gelatine of the fish is released, resulting in a rich, fatty sauce. While particularly effective with fish, the technique can be applied to a variety of ingredients straight from the grill, where the natural juices are combined with oil and acidity to form a natural dressing. This is a technique used often throughout this book. Choose oil and an acid that will complement the ingredients. Using a fine-mesh sieve as a whisk helps to incorporate air and emulsify the sauce.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
3 parts oil, such as olive, grapeseed or nut oil
2 parts grilling juices (on the tray following grilling) or stock
1 part vinegar or citrus juice
sea salt

Method

  1. 1. In a small saucepan, gently warm the oil, then pour it over the grilling juices or stock. Add the vinegar or citrus juice for acidity, then strain all the juices and the oil back into the pan. Return to a low heat.
  2. 2. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve while agitating the sieve continuously until an emulsion is formed.
  3. 3. Taste and adjust seasoning and consistency. Serve immediately.
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