Home-made mayonnaise

I’ve been working on mastering home-made mayonnaise for a couple of weeks now, and I think I’ve got it.

(You didn’t know this was a cooking blog, did you? This is a blog for all seasons.)

The right way to make home-made mayo is with an immersion blender (stick blender) and the measuring container that came with your blender. (If you haven’t misplaced it, as I have. In that case use a 2-cup measuring cup.)

Methods which require you to stir your mayo interminably with a whisk, while very slowly drizzling in the oil, are nonsense. Use an immersion blender. It’ll be done in a few seconds.

Most of the recipes I tried made too much mayo for one or two people. There is an issue about keeping home-made mayo around for too long, because it contains a raw egg, so I ended up modifying my recipe so it makes less than one cup. That’s enough mayo for a normal batch of egg/tuna/chicken salad, and you’ll have some left over to put on sandwiches too.

What oil?
Mayo is basically oil and an egg. First I tried it with extra virgin olive oil, because I don’t really believe in eating seed oils, but the flavour was much too strong. It was horrible. I concluded that you pretty much have to use canola or some other light-flavoured seed oil.

What egg?
Some recipes call for you to separate the eggs and just use the yolks, while others call for whole eggs. I like the ones using whole eggs, because they are easier, but in order to get a small quantity I decided to separate an egg and just use the yolk. This is like using half an egg.

(You know how to separate an egg, don’t you? Just crack it in two and pour the egg back and forth from one shell to the other, letting the white dribble out, until only the yolk is left.)

Home-made mayonnaise

In a 2-cup measuring cup, put the following:

1/2 cup canola or other light oil
1 egg yolk
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 tsp Dijon mustard
a pinch of sugar
salt and pepper

Put your immersion blender over top of the egg yolk, right at the bottom, touching the bottom of the container. Start pulsing. You’ll see the egg turning into mayonnaise before your eyes. After a few pulses you can run the blender for a longer time, and then after a bit you can run it continuously.

Move the immersion blender up and down, or tip it, or whatever you want to do, until the mixture is all blended emulsified and the measuring cup is full of mayonnaise. This takes one minute or less.

What else?
If you want, you can add flavourings like garlic, cayenne, or curry powder. If you add garlic you will have ‘aioli’, that famous scrabble word. I didn’t try adding anything yet because I wanted to master plain old mayo first.

Home-made mayonnaise is so fast and inexpensive that it’s hard to see why anybody would buy Hellman’s or Miracle Whip, and it doesn’t have any creepy additives in it.

Enjoy your mayo!

A year ago today:
Pic 1201

July 13, 2011

Two years ago:
Pic 850
July 13, 2010

Three years:
Pic 512
Bluesfest 2009
July 13, 2009

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