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The Basics – Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise

We should all have some basic recipes in our repertoire. Whenever I need a classic base recipe I turn to the master, at least in my opinion, Julia Child. I have several of her cookbooks but the one I turn to most often is Julia’s Kitchen Wisdom. I know I’ve mentioned this book before and it’s always worth mentioning again. It’s small but packed full of Julia’s master recipes from stock to bechemel, how to cook fish, shellfish, chicken and beef and vegetables, pastry dough and creme to a classic genoise. Over the next few weeks I will be featuring a base recipe along with a recipe that includes or uses it. There will be guest posts from some wonderful and extremely talented bloggers. I think this will be fun!

I love homemade mayonnaise, truth be told I don’t always or often make it. When I need mayo for a very special dish I will, but for every day use, Hellman’s is fine by me.  That said, everyone (who likes mayonnaise) should know how to make it from scratch. It’s really simple, all you need is egg, oil, vinegar or lemon juice, dijon mustard, salt and pepper and a blender, food processor or strong arm and a whisk. I really love customizing with different flavors, meyer lemon and herb are my favorites. You have probably heard of aioli, it’s the same principal but contains garlic and olive oil. When making mayonnaise you usually use a neutral oil like canola or grapeseed or plain vegetable oil. I always use a neutral oil with a tbs of good olive oil, just that little bit gives character to the mayonnaise

Mayonnaise

From Julia’s Kitchen Wisdom

Yields about 1 1/2 –  2 cups

1 whole egg and 2 egg yolks at room temperature

1 tbs lemon juice or white wine vinegar

1 tsp dijon mustard

1/2 tsp salt (I like to use sea salt)

several grinds of white pepper (I use whatever pepper I have on hand)

1 1/2 – 2 cups oil (neutral flavor) Optional + 1 tbs good olive oil

Add the whole egg and yolks to the blender or food processor and blend for 30-45 seconds until it’s thick and light yellow in color. With blender or processor running and through the feeder tube or hole add the lemon juice or vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper. Now slowly drizzle in the oil with the blender/processor running, after you have slowly added approximately 1/2 cup you can start adding the oil faster until you have added all of it.  Taste and adjust the seasoning, you can add more lemon or vinegar, salt and pepper to suit your taste. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Hints:

1. It’s important for everything to be the same temperature

2. Don’t over beat or mix, when I make it I beat or mix the eggs, add the vinegar,mustard salt and pepper and if your oil is not ready to start drizzling I stop the blender. It is possible to over mix, it will liquify rather than emulsify.

3. The recipe calls for 2 cups oil, I never use that much, a cup and a half at the most. I find I don’t really need that much oil.

4. If for some reason your mayonnaise doesn’t come together, don’t despair and throw it out, that has happened to me numerous times. Pour the mixture into a measuring cup, clean out your blender or processor add 2 more egg yolks and a splash of vinegar or lemon juice and start over. Instead of adding oil slowly drizzle in the failed mayo. It will thicken up.

One of my favorite ways to enjoy homemade mayo is on a lobster roll, I didn’t have any lobster so I made my second favorite a Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato sandwich. No recipe needed, you will need the bread of your choice, good bacon, tomato, lettuce and mayonnaise. Sometimes I like to add a few slices of avocado.

BLT

BLT

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86 Comments Post a comment
  1. Beautiful, Suzanne !

    January 31, 2014
  2. You talked me into the book Suzanne… and you talked me into making this mayo with a BLT this weekend too. It’s beautiful!!

    January 31, 2014
    • I love the book, it’s one of my favorites. I am a little nutty with my cookbooks, the books I use over and over that become tattered and stained will eventually bite the dust so I have a second book ready to take over. This is one of the books I have 2 of. It’s so helfpful and in my opinion you can always rely on the wonderful Ms. Child. Thank you so much,

      January 31, 2014
  3. I got this book for Xmas a few years back. I love it! This looks great! Thanks for sharing. :)

    January 31, 2014
    • Thanks Crystal, it’s a really good book, great recipe reference book. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  4. Homemade mayo is to DIE for!! And Julia Child is absolutely The Queen. Her cookbooks are dog-eared at my house!! Salud!!

    January 31, 2014
  5. Thanks for sharing this recipe Suzanne – this mayo sounds so much healthier than Hellmans or other brands with alpha toco…(something), and phytonadione, and oleosorin…and what not added into their ingredient list.
    Hope you have a wonderful weekend

    January 31, 2014
    • Oh I totally agree I don’t eat very much mayonnaise, but all of those chemicals or whatever they are are totally scary. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  6. I love homemade mayo but like you I don’t make it too often. I am sworn off buying cookbooks for the moment but I am thinking that I might make an exception for the Julia Child one you mention. Believe it or not I actually don’t own a Julia Child cookbook. Yet! ;)

    January 31, 2014
    • This is a great cookbook with Julia’s mother recipes. So helpful. Thank you so much.

      January 31, 2014
  7. Thanks for all the tips for making mayo, it is one of those basics I have only done twice in my life! I often turn to Hellmans too, but it must be global, for I find the chemicals in it scary too, that is why I barely use mayo at home! Your sandwich looks delicious!

    January 31, 2014
    • I don’t eat a lot of mayo but homemade is definitely better than commercially prepared. Thanks Viviana, the sandwich was really good!

      January 31, 2014
  8. Hmmm it would be really nice to have homemade mayo. I never made them before. Gotta try! :)

    January 31, 2014
    • It’s really good and if you like mayo it’s a must try. Making flavored mayo is fantastic. Thanks so much Sadia!

      January 31, 2014
  9. Thanks for sharing! I don’t make homemade mayonnaise often enough…you’ve inspired me though!

    January 31, 2014
    • Neither do I but I think I will start, it’s actually great because I can make it as I need it. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  10. Love the sleek, new look, Suzanne. Lovely pictures too :)

    January 31, 2014
  11. I’ve always heard homemade mayo was SO much better than store bought and I believe it when the store brands are so full of yucky chemicals! I bet the tang and creaminess is way better!

    January 31, 2014
    • It really is so much better, not just taste but knowing that all the ingredients are fresh and natural with nothing artificial. Thanks Brandi.

      January 31, 2014
  12. The last time I made it, well…let’s just say it wasn’t memorable. I think I’ll have to give it another go!

    January 31, 2014
    • It’s definitely worth it, I tweak mine to get it to the flavor I want. I like to taste the acid whether lemon or vinegar and it has to have enough salt. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  13. talkavino #

    I swear by Hellmann’s and never contemplating making my own… But may be, may be, I should try? : )

    January 31, 2014
    • Try it you will like it, I too am a die hard Helmans fan but homemade mayo is really wonderful. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  14. Homemade mayo is so much better than anything bought. We sometimes add fresh herbs or chilli to the mix for extra flavour. The recipe I use just has one whole egg – I bet adding the yolks makes the mayo even more luxurious!

    January 31, 2014
    • Thank you, yes the additional eggs make it rich and delicious. I love adding things for added flavor, lemon and herbs are my favorite, chili sauce is great too, love adding sriracha!!

      January 31, 2014
  15. I need to buy some pasteurized eggs and make some – haven’t done so in years and there is nothing like the “real” stuff.

    January 31, 2014
    • I should include a disclosure about raw eggs and the dangers unless they are pasteurized. Glad you mentioned that, I know I hadn’t made mayo in a long time. Had forgotten how good it is! Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  16. Never tried making my own. I just love Helmann’s too much!

    January 31, 2014
    • I also love Helman’s it really is goodl Homemade is fantastic if you ever decide to give it ago. Thanks so much.

      January 31, 2014
  17. I love home made mayo too. I never used egg whites, this is new to me. But if it is coming from ‘the’ guru Julia, I am convinced. Great tips, thank you. Your lobster roll sandwich looks great too.

    January 31, 2014
    • Thanks Fae, yes before I started making this recipe I always thought it was only yolks, honestly I don’t know if there really is much of a difference but if Julia say’s a whole egg thats what I use, she certainly is the guru!!

      January 31, 2014
  18. A great post Suzanne! Very useful ‘hints’. I look forward to the forthcoming ‘The Basics’ in anticipation :-)

    January 31, 2014
    • Thank you so much Jo! I am very excited about this series of posts.

      January 31, 2014
  19. Always keen for a good tip on a new cookbook, especially when it’s been so well-loved and recipes tried and tested like this one! Love your idea of The Basics series – some things like mayonnaise are so useful to know how to make and then be able to adapt for other dishes! Brilliant! :)

    January 31, 2014
    • Thanks Margot, I am very excited about these posts of basic recipes. You are so right having a base recipe that can be tweaked and adapted is so important.

      January 31, 2014
  20. It is so great to see this. How many times have I ran out of mayo and yet I haven’t tried to make it. I have always wonder how to make mayo and I think I have even tried to make it once and it didn’t turn out so well. I’ll make it again…using your recipe. I am sure it is not only healthier, but much tastier than store-bought!

    January 31, 2014
    • Thank you so much, I think I made mayo the first time when I ran out and needed it and didn’t have time to go to the store. It definitely comes in handy to have this type of recipe on hand.

      February 1, 2014
  21. I love Julia, always have, even before I became interested in food. The Smithsonian has her entire kitchen as part of their perm exhibit and it was such fun to see it in person. She was such a lovely woman and model human being. Love her! Also really love this post, Suzanne. Nothing in some ways is more interesting than the basic building blocks of cooking. Making mayonnaise from scratch is not something I’ve tried, but something I would very much like to master.

    January 31, 2014
    • I’ve heard of the exhibit at the Smithsonian but have never seen it. It’s on my bucket list for sure. She really was larger than life and I loved her, tried to always watch her cooking shows, she was funny and irreverent, I used to love to see her flops, they didn’t edit them out, it made her human and approachable and gave her viewers confidence. Thanks so much.

      February 1, 2014
  22. Liz #

    that looks wonderful! Have never given much thought to mayo before, but yours I want to eat from the jar with a spoon :-) Good point about those basics.

    February 1, 2014
    • Thanks so much Liz. I love having a cache of good basic recipes that I can always fall back on.

      February 1, 2014
  23. A great one… Very french and good !

    February 1, 2014
    • Thank you so much, so many of these wonderful classics are all French in origin.

      February 1, 2014
      • In fact I’ve always wandered why the industrial us mayonnaise is so white while our at home is quite yellow… :-)

        February 1, 2014
      • Its so true, I am not sure what they use the quality must be sorely lacking. Julia Child uses 2 yolks and a whole egg with 2 cups oil, that produces a lovely light yellow mayonnaise, especially if you use good pastured farm fresh eggs the yolk are golden yellow. It’s really amazing the difference.

        February 1, 2014
  24. I missed you ! Mayonnaise is one of the most famous sauce here in France ! And actually my favorite ! You’re right it’s a basic and it’s always a pleasure to see that there’s still people who try to make it home made ! Congrats my dear Suzanne !

    February 1, 2014
    • I’ve missed you too, I don’t see you posting very often and get very excited when you do. I am just looking at your crepe cake. Love it. Thank you so much, I love mayonnaise and making it homemade is the best.

      February 1, 2014
  25. Nice to have mayonnaise at home ..Thanks for sharing :)

    February 1, 2014
    • Totally agree, thank you so much!

      February 1, 2014
      • My pleasure … you have very interesting blog ;)

        February 1, 2014
      • Thank you, I just started following yours and am very excited. I love Afghani food I can’t wait to start looking through all of your recipes.

        February 1, 2014
  26. I have tried making mayonnaise before at home, but it failed miserably. I should try again sometime

    February 1, 2014
    • I failed numerous times but don’t worry about that, re incorporate the failed mayo. The mayo shown here was an initial fail, I salvaged it and it’s great. It’s important your eggs are room temperature and that you don’t over mix. Best of luck if you try again and thank you.

      February 1, 2014
  27. Homemade mayonnaise is such a delicious idea, so much better on sandwiches :D

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    February 1, 2014
  28. Love the books recommendation– sounds inspirational! and your mayonnaise pic to brilliant. When we lived in Spain a lot of friends there made their own mayonnaise, but I”ve never tried– I’ll have to see if I can do it… thanks.

    February 1, 2014
    • Thanks Rhonda, I heard that they make different types of mayonnaise in Spain, there is a milk mayo and of course aioli. It’s easy to make and the results are wonderful

      February 2, 2014
  29. I’ve never made mayonnaise from scratch! I don’t know why and I bet the taste is amazing. You’ve definitely inspired me to try it.

    February 2, 2014
    • It’s easier to buy but the flavor is so good it’s worth the effort. Thanks so much Kate.

      February 2, 2014
  30. Thanks for the recipe Suzanne. I know the basics of how to make mayo, but have never tried. The same with yogurt. To be honest, there are so many little things that are easy to make–butter, mayo, mustard–but we never take the time. Life’s too busy. Though I’ve learned if you do take the time, the extra 5 minutes to produce something from scratch, people are endlessly impressed.

    February 2, 2014
    • I love making from scratch both mayo and yogurt but have to admit I don’t do it as often as I should. It truly does make a big difference in taste and quality. Thanks Melissa!

      February 3, 2014
  31. Pasteurised egg? Is that a product you can buy in a supermarket these days. I haven’t heard of it. Which is why I poach the egg yolk/s any time I need mayo. Never, ever buy the stuff. Even though I do like it. :)

    February 2, 2014
    • Yes you can get pasteurized eggs they are readily available in the supermarket. It’s good for recipes that call for raw, at least it’s safe. I never thought of poaching the egg yolk, for how long do you poach?

      February 3, 2014
  32. I just wish I was having that sandwich for lunch today! Love the idea of making your own mayo.

    February 3, 2014
  33. ohlidia #

    Oh, I know what you mean Suzanne. I too love homemade mayo but just don’t make it. My mom always did. Having lived in Belgium for 10 years where fries are wildly popular, she made her own mayo every time she made her home fires. You’ve just brought back a wonderful memory for me and now I’ll to make home fries and mayo for my girls! :-)

    February 3, 2014
    • Oh I love fries with mayo, when I lived in Europe I was introduced to that. Homemade mayo is the best with fries.Thank you.

      February 3, 2014
  34. How’s the finger doing?
    What lovely looking mayo – it looks so unctuous and creamy. My family are Hellmann’s fiends so anything other than that isn’t acceptable. It’s VERY annoying.
    .

    February 3, 2014
    • LOL, Helmans definitely has a strong fan base. Finger is still the same, going to the Hand surgeon on Wednesday, will know more then, Thank you so much.

      February 3, 2014
  35. Julia’s mayo recipe is the best! And great hints, Suzanne! :-)
    Kenley

    February 3, 2014
  36. Brilliant Suzanne! Love back-to-basic recipes like these, thank you for sharing! :)

    February 3, 2014
  37. What a great idea, Suzanne! I haven’t made my own mayo since I was in school, thanks for the reminder. It such a great way to tailor it the way you want.

    February 3, 2014
    • Thanks Susan. I love the homemade stuff, making it inspired me to keep doing so rather than buy.

      February 3, 2014
  38. I adore homemade mayo – probably a bit too much! Yours looks luscious. Serving it with veggies to dip (especially asparagus in the spring) is a favorite appetizer. Homemade condiments are the best!

    February 3, 2014
    • Oh yes, I love dipping vegetables in mayo and one of my favorite sandwiches in the summer is good tomato on bread slathered with mayo and the homemade stuff is so good on this sandwich. Thanks so much Hannah.

      February 4, 2014
  39. sprinklesandsauce #

    great post! very useful!

    February 3, 2014
  40. I love homemade mayonnaise, especially because I can be sure it’s made with all natural, quality ingredients. Yours looks like it turned out perfectly!

    February 4, 2014
  41. I agree from time to time we should make such things at home to be able to remember how it tastes the homemade. This looks delicious and you succeeded in achieving the correct texture and thickness, brava!

    February 5, 2014
    • Thank you Katerina, yes I think that there are several very good reasons to make things home made. It didn’t turn out the first time I had to re do using the broken mayo and it came together beautifully.

      February 5, 2014

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