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Recipe

Homemade Mayonnaise

Yield: Yields about 1 cup.

You can make mayonnaise with any kind of oil, but if you choose unrefined extra-virgin olive oil, don’t be surprised if the emulsion breaks after a few hours—for reasons too chemically complex to explain here, unrefined, old, or improperly stored oils produce unstable mayo. If you really want olive oil-flavored mayonnaise, try cutting unrefined extra virgin oil with neutral-flavor refined oil, or use a refined olive oil.

Ingredients

  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1 cup neutral oil, such as vegetable or canola (or a combination of extra-virgin olive oil and a neutral oil)
  • 1 to 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

Preparation

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the yolk, mustard, and a pinch of salt. Vigorously whisk in some of the oil just a few drops at a time until the mixture is very thick.  Whisk in a little of the lemon juice to thin slightly and then continue to whisk in the oil, slowly at first and gradually increasing the speed as the emulsion takes hold. As the mayonnaise gets thick, whisk in a little more lemon juice (or water, if you don’t want a very tangy mayo) to thin it out.
  • Once all the oil is whisked in, season to taste with salt and more lemon juice, keeping in mind that the lemon juice will also thin the mayonnaise.

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