The journey to homemade mayo began one evening at a Holistic Nutrition workshop about naturally fermented foods. As I helped the instructor unpack her bag of goodies, I noticed that her two most recommended books were ones that I already own: Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, and Wild Fermentation by Sandor Katz. We learned (and tasted) many incredible things that night – I was truly inspired, and I’m sure my experimentation with fermentation will show itself here from time to time.
At some point that evening the words “why would anyone buy prepared mayonnaise or ketchup from the store when you can make your own at home easily and healthily” (or something along those lines) really resonated with me. I already have the book and it really fits with what I do on my website. “I’m totally going to do this”, I thought to myself.
Like so many mayo makers that have come before me, my first attempt was a complete disaster! When instructions for mayonnaise making read: “add oil one drop at a time”, they really do mean it. Please don’t make the same mistake as me! In that first batch I used extra virgin olive oil (and I try not to think of how much of it I wasted). I found the taste too strong for my liking. So, several days later and one more trip to the farmers’ market to procure fresh organic eggs, I gave it another shot. This time with milder tasting sunflower oil, a new determination, and the “one drop at a time” instructions fully understood and committed to – the impossible happened. Slowly but surely, these simple ingredients whirled around in my blender, emulsified and came together to make the most delicious, creamy and simple – mayonnaise. I felt like a magician. You may be laughing right now, but until you’ve tried, you and your sandwiches will never know that wonderful satisfaction.
This recipe is adapted from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. It makes approximately 1 1/2 cups of beautiful mayonnaise.
1 fresh, whole organic egg* (at room temperature)
1 fresh, organic egg yolk* (at room temperature)
2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice (not from concentrate)
1 tablespoon of whey** (optional)
1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
1 cup of pure, expeller-pressed sunflower oil
½ teaspoon of sea salt
Place the egg, lemon juice, whey (if using), mustard and salt, in the bowl of a food process or blender.
Blend until well mixed, about 30 seconds.
With the motor running at a slow to medium speed, add 1/4 cup of the oil drop by drop (do not take any short cuts here). This will take a minute or two, so be patient.
The mixture should begin to emulsify and thicken slightly. At this point you can add the remaining oil in a very slow, steady stream. This will take another minute or two.
Once the oil has been blended, you should have a beautiful mayonnaise to enjoy.
Place mayonnaise in a clean glass jar and if you’ve added whey, keep it covered at room temperature for several hours before refrigerating. If you haven’t used the whey, then no need to leave it out, pop it in the fridge.
*If you are at all uncomfortable about consuming raw eggs then please don’t make this recipe, or try it with pasteurized eggs (but I cannot vouch for the results as I have never tried it this way). If you’re using raw eggs then make sure they are fresh, good quality, free-range organic ones.
**The addition of whey is optional, but according to Nourishing Traditions it increases the shelf life of your mayonnaise and increases the nutritional content. You can make whey by separating a good quality yogurt. Instructions on this page (and the bonus is that you’re left with a delicious cream cheese when you make your own whey).
Once upon a time it seemed like an unattainable goal, and now – freshly made mayonnaise at our fingertips. Dare to dream people, dare to dream!