One of the best things about our ranch, to me, are the fresh eggs that we get daily from our hens. They’re a pleasure to eat boiled, fried, scrambled, poached – you can’t go wrong with any traditional preparation for these eggs. But I think it’s easy to forget that there are so many delicious things that you can do with eggs besides make a fantastic breakfast – like making mayonnaise.
As my husband calls it, the single best, easiest thing you can do to improve your food life: making mayonnaise at home. I have to be honest – I thought mayonnaise was a pretty disgusting condiment until I tried making it at home. Homemade mayonnaise is worlds better than the stuff with a blue top, and although it may sound like a fussy French sauce (which I guess it is), it’s not actually difficult to make at home, especially if you have a food processor. So this week, I’d like to share with you the basic mayonnaise recipe that I make almost every week.
What you’ll need:
- ¼ tsp. regular salt (or 1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt, which is what I usually use)
- 1 tsp. yellow mustard powder
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- A pinch of cayenne pepper or a drop or two of Tabasco sauce (If you like – I do)
- 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 whole egg
- 2 cups oil (I use a 500 mL bottle of avocado oil, but any neutral-tasting oil will work. I do recommend, however, that you not use a strong-tasting extra virgin olive oil unless you really, really like the taste of that oil – the mayonnaise will have a distinct and strong olive oil flavor. It’s still a good sauce, but not what you’d call a versatile one.)
What you’ll do:
Dump everything except the 2 cups of oil into the bowl of your food processor. Whiz it up a few times, just to combine it, then turn the food processor on to run continuously. Slowly begin to drizzle the oil into the processor through the feed tube.
Go s-l-o-w: it should take you about 2 minutes to drizzle in all of the oil. You’ll notice that the mixture will gradually begin to thicken as you drizzle.
Once you’ve added all the oil, stop the machine, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and whiz for another ten seconds or so just to incorporate any bits that didn’t get mixed in. Have a taste and add more salt or cayenne/Tabasco if you think it needs it.
And that’s it. That’s literally all it takes. Have a taste: if you’ve ever wondered how mayonnaise, which people mostly know only in its blue-top-jar incarnation, could possibly be one of the great French sauces, well, now you know. So easy, so quick, and so good.
I let my mayo sit on the counter for an hour or two after I make it to let the flavors meld before refrigerating. I really believe that this improves the flavor, but by all means skip the step if it makes you uncomfortable.
(Yes, this recipe contains raw eggs – I’m a healthy individual and I trust the source of my eggs, so I’m ok with that. But if you have any qualms about eating raw eggs, pasteurized eggs from the grocery store will work just as well.)
This mayonnaise is beautiful stuff: it’s great on its own as a dip for asparagus or green beans and on sandwiches. But there’s a lot more that you can do with your homemade mayonnaise - I’ll share a few of my favorite recipes over the next couple of weeks.