Recipe: My Dad’s No Fail Mayo

I never buy mayonnaise anymore because it’s so easy to make, and once you’ve had homemade mayo, you’re spoiled for life. The only downside (if there could possibly be one) is that, like ice cream, you learn exactly what’s in it. As Kerry, chef from one of my favorite restaurants, Cafe Miranda would say it’s an extremely efficient fat delivery system…but yummy!
My dad taught me a long time ago how to make mayo, so here is his no-fail mayo. This makes about a cup.

  • 1 egg yolk (at room temperature)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or vinegar of your choosing)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • (optional: 1 small clove of garlic, herbs like tarragon etc.)
  • About 1 cup canola or any vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste

Accidental Locavore MayonnaiseIn the bowl of a food processor (blender, or stick blender will work) add the egg yolk, lemon juice, olive oil, mustard, garlic and salt. Process a few times until well mixed. With the motor running, very slowly pour in about a cup of oil. You need to be patient or the mayo will separate. As you keep pouring you will see it start to thicken and then thin out a little. When it’s your desired texture, stop, and taste. Correct seasonings and you’re done. Serve and enjoy!

My verdict: Once you’ve had homemade mayo and realize how easy it is to make, you’ll never buy it again. The other advantage is that you can add whatever seasonings-herbs, garlic, spices, you want. Tarragon is great in it, especially for chicken salad. We usually add a small clove of garlic and I like it a little lemony. And after you’ve made it a few times, you can give hollandaise sauce, aioli and remoulade a try. The secret to any of these is to get an emulsion so always add the oil in a slow stream.


10 thoughts on “Recipe: My Dad’s No Fail Mayo”

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  7. in tomato season, add lots of fresh basil: rough chop
    for a neat raw cauliflower dip, take about a half cup of your mayo, add
    about a teaspoon of lemon juice, about a tablespoon of sour cream, curry powder to taste, and salt, if necessary (i use adobo)
    …..and, for a lush, luxe treat, try tarragon vinegar instead of lemon juice, find some tarragon mustard, and throw in lots of fresh tarragon, rough chop
    bon appetit! mom

  8. If you thin out the mayo with a little lemon juice, some zest, a little olive oil, and cumin, then roll the asparagus in it, and grill them…delicious and they don't stick to the grill!

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