Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Making Mayonnaise

For some reason, it never occured to me to make my own mayonnaise. My family never did; we always had a jar of it in the fridge and I suppose it's not the quickest of activities one can undertake, especially when you don't have any fancy electronic gadgets.

I really hate waste, so when I was faced with two egg yolks after making the orange almond biscuits, my thoughts immediately turned to making mayonnaise. I even had some leftover roasted turkey to eat and as luck would have it - some tarragon in the fridge. It was like a match made in heaven. So, I set about making the mayonnaise. The trick is to whisk fast and whisk hard, expecially at the beginning while tentatively dripping the oil in.

At first, not a lot happened as I painstakingly dribbled the oil in. I had to keep repeating "patience, patience" over to myself, because I simply don't have any and did wonder what would happen if I just chucked a load of the oil in. But I'm glad I didn't, as curdling would have been inevitable.

And so, before my very eyes, mayonnaise was made. It really makes a difference too - it's a pale cream colour and tastes beautifully rich and of the perfect consistency. None of this jelly-like wobble you get from manufactured mayonnaises and their stabilisers, oh no. This is rich, luxuriant, and seriously bad for you. I dived in with gusto.


To fill one pesto jar

2 egg yolks

1 clove garlic

250mls groundnut or rapeseed oil

1 tsp white wine vinegar

1 level tsp salt

Freshly milled pepper

Crush the garlic and mince finely. Add to a large bowl with the egg yolks, salt and pepper. Whisk lightly, then add a drop of the oil and carry on whisking. Whisk constantly whilst dripping the oil until you have a thick smooth paste - then add the white wine vinegar, whisk vigorously and then dribble the oil into a steady stream while whisking furiously until all the oil is gone. Sterilise your jar and the mayo should keep in the fridge or up to a week.

To make tarragon mayonnaise, I simply chopped up a tablespoon of tarragon and chives to 2 tablespoons of mayo.

The mayo is quite garlicky, so if you want something a bit more like shop-bought mayo then leave out the garlic, or add a little less.


Chris Pople said...

Home made mayo is the best thing ever. I make it with shitloads of garlic and spread it on toast for lunch. It looks like yellow jelly. It's brilliant.

The Ample Cook said...

Home made mayonnaise is just a different beast isn't it? I bet it was great with the turkey and tarragon.

Helen said...

Yeah! I'm so glad it worked out! Are you converted to the hand method? How's the biceps?

Anonymous said...

tarragon maya... you mean bernaise??? :) You forgot to mention to swap the vinegar for tarragon vinegar (if possible)

Hollow Legs said...

Chris - I loooove aioli! Makes you smell for days and days. Great stuff.

Helen - the biceps hurt. A lot. But worth the effort.

Genuiness - I do believe BĂ©arnaise includes shallots, vinegar (as you said), chervil and butter. Rather a different beast altogether.

Kavey said...

Hmmmm I've not made plain mayonnaise but we made our own Bearnaise some months ago, and my goodness, the sheer wonderous beauty of it! We amazed ourselves!

Alex said...

Oh wow - worth the aching arms, I'll bet?!

Niamheen said...

You really can't beat homemade mayo! I love it. Especially nice to play with it by adding herbs etc. YUM!

Su-Lin said...

I'm lazy - do you reckon a hand mixer would work? Actually, I really ought to whip it by hand...my arms need the workout!

Jules said...

I've never made mayonaise before. I'll have to give it a go. Yours looks delicious.

Boo said...

Funny, I made hollandaise this weekend, eggs at Easter and all that! I used some leftover egg yolks that I'd frozen and it didn't work out quite as well as your mayo. Also a different thing entirely, and much less strenuous on the arms!

lewis said...

I tried to make Mayonnaise once in a blender and I did was ruin three egg yolks. I can't bring myself to try it again but after reading your post I might give it another go.

Unknown said...

You have inspired me to try this. Sounds like it will be a good workout as well with all that whisking will maybe make up for the mayo!