Cooking the Classics: Homemade Mayonnaise

I think this is another basic recipe that “everyone should master”, like Béchamel. (By the way, I’ve made a béchamel a couple of times since I posted about it and I have to say, my roux is now a thing of beauty.) I was really keen to try homemade mayonnaise because I always get annoyed when I see the unnecessary preservatives on the store-bought stuff.

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Mayonnaise is a stable emulsified sauce, which means that it’s a mixture of two liquids that would normally separate.

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To make it, you simply combine an egg yolk with mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper. Then, you pour in the oil, a very little bit at a time, constantly whisking energetically. This means that you are not letting the oil separate from the egg mixture and form a separate layer, instead, you are combining it in. I wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to use an electric beater at this point. Once you add the oil, the mayonnaise is ready; it should have a firm texture but in general it will look more yellow than store-bought mayo.

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Because homemade mayonaise has no preservatives, you should have it within 48 hours of making it. Keep it in the fridge, covered so that the cling film touches its surface.

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I used my mayonnaise in some sandwiches we had for a quick lunch last Saturday. They were so simple and so good!

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You just slice some white bread and spread plenty of mayo on each slice. Then add some sliced tomatoes. (We had to make do with only one tomato.)

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Top with some chopped lettuce leaves. Cucumber and sweetcorn would be good too.

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Add two rashers of fried bacon, to make things nice and crispy.

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On top of the bacon, add some shredded cooked chicken. I had made a roast chicken for our dinner on new year’s day so I just pulled some meat off the bones (which I later used for stock) and heated it up in the oven. You could stick a piece of chicken (breast, drumstick, whatever you fancy) under the grill and then cut it into small pieces.

For variations, you could skip the chicken and add a hard boiled egg. Or a fried egg. Or some grated cheese. The possibilities are endless. But don’t skip the bacon!

Top with another slice of bread and it’s ready. Delicious!

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12 thoughts on “Cooking the Classics: Homemade Mayonnaise

  1. Beth F says:

    I’ve made homemade mayo a couple of times and it really is so much better than store bought. On the other hand, I am *not* a mayo fan, and even making my own didn’t really change my mind.

    • bookworm says:

      Hm, to be honest it doesn’t bother me at all (I’m equally unconcerned with having un-pasteurised cheese).
      However, in my French Cooking cookbook I read that if you add an extra splash of vinegar to the mixture once all the oil is incorporated, it reduces the risk of salmonella.

  2. Louise says:

    I like mayonnaise but have never got around to making my own. Thanks for the reminder. I should do it sometime soon. A cup is a lot though, and it would be a shame to waste such a glorious prize.

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