Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Healthy Mayo?

Today I wanted to feature an article from one of the best cooks I know as well as my best friend Tim Mallon. He addresses the problem with mayonnaise and why it is important to make it yourself. Enjoy!

Homemade mayonnaise is the way to go if you like mayonnaise. It is much better than anything you can buy in the store, including the ‘healthy’ brands. Many of the store versions contain all sorts of stuff that you don’t need to be consuming in your mayo like calcium disodium edta, xantham gum, vegetable oil, soybean oil, and other ‘’natural flavors” (which you have no clue what they are).

Making mayonnaise at home is rather simple and easy. The thing to remember is that it is an emulsion. You have to whisk a large amount of oil into a small amount of egg and lemon juice (you could use vinegar as well). There are so many variations to making mayonnaise and you can try all sorts of things till you find something you like but I will give you a general, basic mayonnaise recipe that I have used:

-Either 1 egg or 2 egg yolks (doesn’t matter. but it will be a different density depending which)
-2 Tablespoons of lemon juice
-sea salt to taste
-1 cup of extra virgin olive oil

Whisk together the eggs, lemon juice, and salt till smooth and combined well. Then start pouring the olive oil in VERY SLOWLY. If you pour the oil in to fast it will break the emulsion and your mayonnaise will just be runny. Pouring the oil in slowly is the only thing that is tedious about making mayonnaise. As you continue to add the oil you can speed up a bit as long as you notice the emulsion staying together. When finished you should have a mayonnaise that is not runny and that will stay in place when you tip the jar.

There are many variations on mayonnaise and you should experiment till you get what you like. Many people like to add dijon mustard (like 2 teaspoons or a tablespoon). Some people add lots of pepper or cayenne pepper. Others like garlic and herbs. Once you get the basic recipe down you can pretty much rule the mayonnaise world. Once you rule the mayonnaise world you will never go back to store bought mayonnaise… well… you shouldn’t… cause that would be crazy.

Alas, I have no pictures to show from my last mayonnaise making extravaganza. I will have to take some pics for you the next time I make it.


Chris said...

Just had my first go at this. It was very easy. Although it split, I was able to rescue it with a little warm water (thank you Jamie Oliver!).

How much healthier is homemade mayo?
And what on earth are they putting into the branded mayo to make it so unhealthy?

Terry Barga said...

It's healthier because of the lack of vegetable oil. Most mayo's come with rancid (cooked at high heat) vegetable oils.

Taking them out and replacing them with good oils and fats like olive oil. You will be doing your heart and gut a favor!