Because taramasalata is made in so many Greek households (in Turkish homes, too), the variations go on: in some versions, mashed potato supplements or replaces bread soaked in water. Some recipes use onion, others prefer garlic, still others use both. Olive oil is traditional but can be too strongly flavoured: today it’s often blended with more neutral oils.
Other recipes include egg yolks, as you would for mayonnaise. Australia’s Pam Talimanidis recommends yolks in her book A La Grecque (Hardie Grant, 2009), named for the Great Ocean Road restaurant she co-founded with her Greek husband, Kosta. Her recipe finishes with a sprinkling of lemony ground sumac, a garnish we borrowed for Yolaine Corbin’s taramasalata recipe.
Alternative garnishes include Kalamata olive cheeks, which are a very traditional decoration. If a touch of Calombaris glamour is what you’re after, a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of dramatic black salt is the way to go. To go a deluxe step further, try a generous scattering of fresh salmon roe.
No matter what you add, the dip will be delicious with triangles of warm pita bread, crunchy crudités, or anything else that rings your Hellenic bells. Pass the iced ouzo.