Maker: Chef Hagai Mesilati
Chef Hagai (Ha-Guy) Mesilati is an owner and the executive chef of Palette Dome Cuisine, a boutique catering and personal chef service in the DC metro area. Palette Dome takes a fresh and healthful Modern Mediterranean approach to food. Using predominantly local organic produce, they incorporate Mediterranean spices and aromas as well as other influences to healthful, well-balanced dishes for a unique dining experience, at your event, at your home, or at your office.
A Note from Chef Mesilati…
Mayonnaise is one of those condiments that you either love or hate, rarely are people indifferent to mayonnaise.
If you love it, you probably have it on every ham and cheese sandwich you eat, as a base to your brisket sandwich, with hard boiled eggs, with tomato and basil over a fresh piece of sourdough or challah bread, with tuna, and of course with fries, just like the Europeans. If you dislike, not to say hate it, creamy coleslaw is not your friend, you avoid classic egg salad like fire, and the thought of those fries with anything other than ketchup runs shivers up and down your spine.
I believe this comes from the industrial version of mayonnaise that is very smooth and creamy, yet somewhat too neutral, and thus in an attempt to reach a bigger audience, loses many along the way.
Our version of homemade mayo is a little thicker in consistency than the store bought version, has a tangier flavor profile that can be adjusted to your liking, and can serve as a great base to many other sauces and dips, enhancing their flavor since the base is no longer “just neutral”.
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp white wine vinegar
½ tsp Dijon mustard (smooth)
½ tsp salt
Pinch of white pepper
1 ½ cup sunflower or canola oil
In a food processor with regular blade combine egg, lemon juice, vinegar, mustard and salt. Let it run for 2 to 3 minutes till the mixture starts to get lighter in color and fluffy, as the air mixes in.
Using a cup with a spout, while food processor is on, slowly (very slowly!) poor the oil in. This should take anywhere from 3 to 5 minutes. (If you add too much oil too quickly it won’t be incorporated with the eggs.)
Once all the oil is incorporated, let the food processor run for 1 more minute, to achieve a good consistency.
You are done! Package the mayonnaise in a sealed container, and keep refrigerated for up to two weeks.
No food processor? Use a blender. No blender? Mixer. No mixer? A whisk with a steady hand will get you there, just make sure to double or even triple up mixing times.
If you end up over processing your mayonnaise and it starts to “break” (not looking smooth, and a bit chunky), stop the food processor, get some more oil on hand, and then simply continue processing it and add a tablespoon or more of oil, till it re-binds.
Mayo does not freeze well, so just keep it refrigerated and use where needed. It does contain raw eggs, so make sure to use fresh eggs, and always refrigerate mayonnaise when not in use.
*EGG SAFETY: If you are using fresh, unpasteurized eggs in your mayonnaise, be aware that young children, elderly persons and individuals with weakened immune systems should take extra precautions with any food that contains raw eggs.
For a tangier flavor replace white wine vinegar with white vinegar or even tangier apple cider vinegar
Add some lemon zest for “more lemon”, just make sure to add it up front and mix a bit longer before adding oil to make sure it incorporates smoothly into the mix
Though any oil can be used, we find that lighter tasting oils make for a more enjoyable mayonnaise. Using olive oil produces a very heavy flavor profile that we find less enjoyable.
Once you’ve mastered basic mayonnaise, feel free to experiment with flavor:
Add minced garlic to create an aioli
Add Sriracha or any other hot sauce for hot mayo
Add fresh minced ginger for an Asian flavor
Add herbs for a summer mayo (basil is amazing, but tends to oxidize fast - do that for immediate use)
Use only egg whites for milder flavor
Use only egg yolks for a more “French” flavor
Replace mustard with ripe avocado for “avocado mayo”
Replace mustard with peanut butter for an even better mayo for fries
Add some honey for sweet mayo
Use your imagination: the sky is the limit!