It’s a rich, tangy, creamy egg- and oil-based emulsion used as a binder, dipping sauce and salad dressing. You can call it “fancy mayo” if you like, but its French name is remoulade — and you might as well use it!
Remoulade is made by blending eggs and oil to make a mayonnaise that is enhanced with other ingredients to make a condiment. Not unlike tartar sauce — which is actually a kind of remoulade — the mayonnaise is mixed with any combination of anchovies, acidifiers like lemon juice and mustard, fresh or dried herbs, spices and finely chopped pickles or capers.
The French often mix julienned raw celery root or shredded carrot with remoulade as a simple salad or accompaniment, almost like cole slaw. Elsewhere around Europe, it’s served with fried fish, French fries, crab cakes, boiled potatoes, steamed artichokes, chilled seafood, roast beef, hot dogs and sandwiches. Some add sugar for a sweeter version, and others employ spices like curry and turmeric for a yellow hue.
Hot sauce or cayenne-spiked remoulade is frequently served with Cajun food (a cuisine with French roots), so depending on where you encounter it, it may pack a little heat. You’ll be able to tell Cajun from French by a telltale pink hue. Ready to take it for a spin? Start with fried seafood and work your way out!