Thursday, July 7, 2011

DIY Mayonnaise

Homemade mayonnaise is a little time consuming but tastes awesome. I hadn't made it for quite a while, but we ran out of store bought mayo, and it is over an hour each way by bus to get inexpensive Hellman's mayonnaise here. So I decided to try it again. This time, making my own mayonnaise would actually save me time. I also pasteurized the egg this time since I wanted to keep the mayonnaise for more than a couple of days in the fridge. I'll be honest, I don't usually pasteurize raw eggs in things we are going to eat right away (and I do like to eat cookie dough too). However, if you are in a high risk group (very young, very old, immunocompromised, etc.), want to save the mayonnaise a little longer, or the thought of eating raw eggs just freaks you out, go ahead and pasteurize the egg so that you don't have to worry about getting food poisoning from salmonella.

Basic Mayonaise

1 egg yolk
1 cup of oil (vegetable, canola, sunflower, and oil all work well, avoid strongly flavored oil like the weird fish flavored vegetable oil here)

Separate the egg yolk and whisk in a mixing bowl. Begin to add oil literally drop by drop at first whisking to incorporate each drop really well. Don't rush this step. This is not difficult but does require a little patience. If you add too much oil in the beginning the fat emulsion will not hold and your mayonnaise will separate back into egg and oil. After you have incorporated about a third of the oil, you can begin to add the oil a little quicker, until all of the oil is incorporated. If you get tired of whisking by hand, call for someone with endless energy to help. Or you can make this recipe with a hand mixer, stand mixer, or blender to speed up the process slightly and save your arm a little workout.

At this time you can mix in a few tablespoon of whey from draining yogurt (thereby making yogurt "cream" cheese) to better preserve the mayonnaise. Or you can your own healthy lowfat mayo by mixing half mayonnaise and half yogurt. This reduces the fat content with something that is actually good for you and helps preserve the mayo at the same time.

If you want a more flavorful mayonnaise, you can add a teaspoon or two of lemon juice, vineger, or mustard to the egg yolk at the beginning. Some people like a pinch of salt and/or pepper too.

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