October 23, 2015

DIY Mayonnaise: you gotta try it!

My husband sends me video clips all the time. Via email. Via text message. Facebook. It doesn’t matter. He sends them. All. The. Time. If it’s not bad enough that he sends me these links, he expects me not only to watch them, but to either laugh hysterically or have some deep insight, or both, and then thank him profusely for sharing said life changing video. I think he has a problem.

When he sends me a link, usually I delay watching it. Why? Mostly because who’s got time to laugh really. I’m too busy being annoyed or cleaning or being annoyed at cleaning to take time out of my day to watch a potentially life changing hilarious video. He comes home from work and asks, did you watch the video? Definitely has a problem.

Sometimes the thought-provoking links he sends me backfire. What was meant for me to ponder on and then discuss later, actually ends up being life-punishing for him. Once he sent me a video on the dangers of aluminum, as a result he became the recipient of exhaustive homemade deodorant trials. Another time, he made me watch a Morgan Spurlock documentary, and was forced to his take his lunch to work in a pillowcase (Kidding. Sort of). So, when he sent me a youtube video showing how the Hellmann’s mayo people sex their proprietary chicks, he had to have known there would be consequences.  See, the thing is, once I see something, it’s very hard for me to unsee it. He should’ve known better.  I mean, he knows me! 

But back to the video: so Hellmann’s has proprietary hens who lay the Hellmann’s eggs that make the Hellmann’s mayo.  In their factory, workers sex thousands of chicks, like a conveyor belt full of chicks, just a blur of tiny yellow puffballs.  As they sex the chicks, the females are separated and go along on their merry way to become battery egg laying machines for their ridiculously short lives.  The males on the other hand, well, lets just say they meet their maker swiftly through the “humane” macerator. It’s really called a macerator. I was stunned. This is the best way to make mayonnaise?? (I found a less graphic article that’s pretty easy to read, and you don’t have to watch the video and cry for an hour after it. I mean, it’s from Buzzfeed, how much easier does it get than that? but it’s legit. You can find lots of info about it online, too. And to be fair, Hellmann’s  has released statements through their parent company asserting that they’re working to change the way they treat their chickens. Which is great. Know what’s even better? Mayo is really easy to make once you get the right recipe and you don’t have to kill baby chicks to do it, you can just get some eggs from your local farm/store).

you can make this diy mayo. It's easy and delicious!

My morning egg haul. Makes my mayo super easy and delicious!

After watching this video, much to my poor well-meaning-mayo-loving-husband’s chagrin, I went to the kitchen and promptly threw out my half full mayo from the fridge just to make a point (I know you get it, Mr. recycle guy). I then proceeded right there to attempt legit DIY mayonnaise. I mean, how hard can it be? You take some eggs and some oil and you mix it together, right?! I started off with Jamie Oliver’s recipe, mostly because I had the cookbook and I was trying to go old school, and plus he’s British. I mean, everything is better with an accent. Fail. First, who has got time to mix by hand? I mixed and mixed and mixed and nothing. Nothing but my tennis elbow acting up and egg yolk strands all over my counter. I then headed to my beloved Pinterest, to find pretty pictures of mayo, which is always inspiring. I’ll tell you what: making mayo is tricky! I had so many fails, that I started to feel bad for my chickens, laying their precious eggs, only to end up being a part of a gloppy broken mayo mess. Yes, my friends, mayo breaks, if you don’t mix it just so. One second you have this glossy, thick, creamy perfection, and the next, clumpy, oily goop. I tried many, many recipes and different variations.  My final recipe is one I’m pretty happy with.  It has a bit more zing than traditional mayo (not as much as a salad dressing), but it’s creamy and lovely on a sandwich. Best of all, it’s consistent. I get mayo everytime with very little effort–that is something I can live with.

you can make this diy mayo. It's easy and delicious!

DIY Mayonnaise*

2 eggs

1Tbsp Grainy mustard

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

1 Tbsp ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar)

1.5  Cups Sunflower Oil (or other mild flavoured oil.  You can use olive oil if you’d like, just keep in mind it has a distinctive flavour that will be present in the mayo)

salt and pepper, to taste

Immersion blender

Here’s what I do:

First things first: the eggs MUST be room temperature.  I can’t stress this enough.  Your mixture will not homogenize if your eggs are even cool.  So, if you don’t have eggs that are currently room temperature, but you want to make mayo right now, place the eggs in a deep bowl or cup and cover them completely with warm water.  Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes.  This should bring them up to room termparature and make them ready to use.  Alternatively, take the eggs out of the fridge the night before.  If they are farm eggs, they’re good to sit on the counter for a few weeks without worrying about salmonella. Cool, right?!

Once your eggs are room temperature, crack and separate the yoks, reserving the whites for another recipe  (you can substitute 2 egg whites for an egg in most baking recipes, or you can make some delicious meringues.  Egg whites also freeze really well).

Put the two yolks in the container your immersion blender came with.  If you don’t have that container, find a container that is at least 8 inches deep with a flat bottom and has the same circumference as the blender.  Ideally, you want the container to just fit the blender so the mayo can expand and crawl up the sides as it homogenizes.  It doesn’t work as well or as consistently if you use a bowl.

Next, add the lemon juice, mustard and ACV.  If you prefer, you can leave out the mustard, but the other two are musts: they help create the emulsion so everything can be all stabalized.  With your immersion blender pressed to the bottom of the container, turn it on high and slowly raise and lower it in a straight up and down motion.  Slowly pour the oil into the container as the immersion blender is on, while moving the blender in slow up and down motions. You will hear the liquid thickening before seeing it.  Once it has thickened, you will really have to pay attention to how much oil you can add before the mayo breaks.  I usually stop at 1 cup, and then proceed with caution.  At 1 cup oil, the mayo will be really thick and stopping there is perfectly fine as it makes a really rich sandwich topper.  However, if you like your mayo a bit more malleable, continue drizzling the oil until you’ve added the extra half cup. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The whole process should take 1-2 minutes.  Taste for seasoning.  Transfer mayo to an airtight container.

Store, refrigerated for up to two weeks.

*no baby chickies were injured in the making of this mayonnaise.

you can make this diy mayo. It's easy and delicious!

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