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Garlic Laden Concoction...Not for the Faint of Heart

As I said in the Foreword to this section, this was the dish that started us on the Grandpa Martino Memorial Dinner (GMD) journey in early 2000.  I also mentioned that Mom used to make this for me once in a while and I can remember at least twice, going to the house on Monroe Street for lunch while I was working at Besser’s there in Roanoke.  I wonder now what my coworkers must have thought when I came back after downing a batch of this garlic laced dip.  I imagine Pam wasn’t thrilled that evening either.


We use this dish as an hors d'oeuvre at our dinners, though I believe when Grandpa made it, it was a meal in itself.  Be warned, if you try this, it isn’t for the faint of heart.  The first time we had it, the very first dinner in fact, Jim took a spoonful and just downed it as though it were mashed potatoes…a mistake he never made again.

The Mixture

5 cloves garlic
1 potato
1 slice white bread
1 whole egg
1 egg yolk

Boil the potato and mash it.  Mash the garlic.  Take the slice of bread and soak it in water.  Wring out the water and form into ball.  Mix these ingredients, the egg and the egg yolk and blend on medium til thoroughly mixed.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Cool mixture

* A fun note, one recipe we found for laia described the process for adding the white bread by saying, “squeeze out water and throw bread into mixture.”

The Dippings

Potatoes, carrots, beets

Cook the vegetables and serve hot, dipping into the mixture.  I don’t know how many this recipe serves, really, as we’ve had as many as nine people at a dinner where laia was served and we never finished it.  A couple tastes go a long way.  It is really an interesting dish though, so try it and enjoy!

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