Updated: Apr 17, 2020
by Kara Kimbrough
I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with mayonnaise. I love it spread lightly – key word: lightly – on a crispy hamburger bun. Sprinkled with ground black pepper and melded with a sliced tomato, crispy lettuce, ketchup, and a beef patty, it’s a winning combination. And, who can fully enjoy a BLT without a little mayo to offset salty bacon and serve as a softener for crunchy toasted bread? Lastly, imagine making tuna, chicken, or shrimp salad without a light base of creamy mayo to hold it all together. It simply doesn’t work.
However, topping anything – and yes, I have friends that add a dollop to peas and other vegetables – with a large quantity of mayo is out of the question. It’s simply too dense and rich for my taste.
But as I said, there are many dishes that simply can’t be enjoyed to the fullest without mayo. If you have time, stirring up a batch in your kitchen creates a product that is infinitely better than anything you’ll find in a jar. If you haven’t tasted the homemade version in a while or at all, you may want to give it a try. And really, mayo only takes a few minutes to whip up.
Here are a few tips to get it just right. Make sure egg yolks are at room temperature before you start. Covering whole eggs with warm water for a few minutes will do the trick. And, add oil very slowly in drops as you begin, then increase speed as the mayo begins to thicken.
If you can’t tolerate the taste of mayo or need to avoid it for health reasons, I recently discovered a recipe for sriracha sauce made with Greek yogurt. Sriracha is a type of hot sauce or chili sauce made from a paste of chili peppers, distilled vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. If you can’t find it or don’t have it on hand right now, just use a splash of your favorite hot sauce. After just one batch, it is now my go-to spread for sandwiches and burgers in place of higher fat mayo. And, it serves other purposes in delightful ways.
Lacking dip for my chips (my stress-eating weakness) last weekend and not wanting to make an unnecessary supermarket run, the sauce was a delicious substitution. Even better, I didn’t feel as guilty about eating chips when I paired them with a healthier dip.
Here are my recipes for homemade mayo and sriracha sauce. Like me, you’ll be making them long after Pandemic 2020 has passed. Homemade Mayonnaise 2 egg yolks 1-1/2 cups vegetable oil 2 teaspoons cider vinegar 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard 3/4 teaspoon sugar Salt and freshly ground white pepper In a glass bowl, whisk the egg yolks to break them up. Continue to whisk constantly while adding oil very slowly in drops in the beginning. When the emulsion begins to form and mayo begins to thicken, pour oil in a slow, thin stream while continuing to whisk.
Whisk in the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, and sugar to blend well. Season with salt and white pepper to taste. Transfer to a covered container and refrigerator for up to five days. The flavor will develop better if it’s refrigerated several hours before serving. “Who Needs Mayo?” Easy Sriracha Sauce 1 cup Greek yogurt (can use low-fat sour cream if you prefer) 3 tablespoons dill pickle relish 3 tablespoons ketchup 2 tablespoons sriracha (substitute hot sauce, to taste) 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce In a small bowl, stir all of the sauce ingredients. Cover and refrigerate at least two hours before serving.