Saturday, May 29, 2010

Stupid freaking mayonnaise... and how I cheered myself up.

So several buttheads called me a weenie for not posting the pics of my mayonnaise-making-hell. Fine, buttheads, I'll post the pics. I'm sitting on my lanai in Hawaii drinking a cup of coffee as I write this. Here's my view. That's what you get for calling me a weenie.
So here's a repost of the basic description of the whole freaking mess, with a pics, and a little more bonus honesty (in other words how I cheered myself up). Thanks to Michelle's 30th birthday. Yes, that involved alcohol.

So as you know, I decided to make the mayo a few days ahead of time. So I had time to muck it up. We begin with my mise en place - so far so good...
I got out my cheapo food processor, turned it on and put four egg yolks in. And there they sat - at the bottom of the food processor with the metal blades whirring away happily above them. Uh, this isn't going to work. But hey! I have a mini-food chopper that will do the same thing! The day is saved!

Alas, not so much. I got it out and put the yolks in and they were happily mixing away when I realized that you can't add a slow stream of oil to a food chopper - there's no way to add anything because it has to have the lid on for the mechanism to be engaged and whir away. That's okay, I grew up on a farm - I'm used to improvising!

So I took the locking lid mechanism off, jammed a knife into the mechanism to make it think the lid was locked on, pushed the button and voila - it was working. But wait - I need to pour in a slow stream of oil now... but I have one hand holding the power button and one hand holding the knife into the mechanism... no more hands left. Okay, I can be MacGuyer/MacGrubber - I can do this. So now I'm holding the knife against the mechanism by leaning against it with my stomach, holding the power button with my left hand and pouring an excruciatingly slow stream of oil into the yolks... and... it's working! Yes, yes, yes! Sorry - no pictures of this because I was already using both hands and my stomach and since both feet were on the ground, there were no appendages left for taking pictures...

The oil is emulsifying with the yolks, it's turning into a thick and creamy substance. I'm so proud of myself. I rock. I knew I could do this. I paused to take a pic because clearly I rock:
It's been about an hour now because you wouldn't BELIEVE how long it takes to pour 2 cups of canola oil out in a thin thread. Both arms are cramping, my neck hurts and I'm starting to feel like the knife is turned backwards and is stabbing me in the stomach. But I'm so close, it's almost done - just 1/4 cup of oil to go and I will be the queen of the... what's that? What just happened? What the f*#$&( did the ^%@ just do??? Why is it suddenly all soupy now? IT BROKE? IT FREAKING BROKE? After over an hour and a half of mayonnaise making hell, it broke. It suddenly turned into this totally gross oily mess. I hate mayonnaise.

I was really pissed off, in case you couldn't tell. But licking this bowl and beater clean of the devil's food cake batter made me feel much better. This is why nobody was harmed in the making of the mayo.
Was it worth it? Well yeah it was worth it. What part of devil's food cake batter confused you people? Do you even know me at all?!?

Clearly this means I need a new food processor. A pretty stainless steel Cuisinart model, right? Right. And Santa Claus won't be here for a while, so I hit Kohl's on my lunch break the next day and spent WAY too much on a new mayonnaise-making-machine. Homemade mayonnaise, take two. Starting all over. This time it will work perfectly - there's even a tiny hole in the bottom of the plunger SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR STREAMING OIL IN TO MAKE MAYONNAISE... how could I fail?
Well, I'll tell you how - I don't freaking know how! I just did, okay - I did. I failed again. In the machine that was SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR STREAMING OIL IN TO MAKE MAYONNAISE. Gross, huh?
Seriously, why would you make your own mayonnaise when you have a perfectly good jar of Hellman's in the fridge? As I was lifting my brand new, way too expensive mayonnaise-making-machine over my head to hurl it out the window over the sink a thought popped into my head... oh yeah! I saw someone say you can save broken mayonnaise on Top Chef once. I'm back in business. I googled it, and it worked - I DID IT!
I made homemade mayonnaise!
I added the lemon juice and salt and tasted... and it tasted just like Hellman's to be honest. I didn't see a real big difference.

Gee, that was worth it. So I used it for the coleslaw - didn't much like the coleslaw, so I was pretty irritated by the whole thing. But the same day I made the glazed and rubbed spare porkribs, coleslaw and smashed marble potatoes, Jeremy caught several catfish. So we had catfish the next night and I used the mayo to make homemade tartar sauce - and it was DELICIOUS. So... I guess that makes it a little better.

However - and here's your bonus - here at the six dozen mini cupcake truffles I made for Michelle's surprise 30th birthday party. Aren't they cute? This is where the devil's food cake batter that cheered me up went into...

And here's Miss Michelle at her surprise party!
Happy Birthday, Michelle!


  1. While I applaud your persistance, and adore the cupcakettes, I simply cannot approve of anyone's making mayonnaise, including Hellmanns. Mayonnaise is a most disgusting substance, right up there, uh down there with Limberger, and stale crackers. Gah. Love you though, don't let the off-white gagstuff come between us!

  2. I gotta give you kudos Heather. Making your own mayonnaise. I would love to try the recipe myself, but I use mayonaise on everything and I'd probably need to make a new batch every day. For now I'll stick with Kraft. But devil's food cake? yum!!

  3. Another great blog. Thanks, Heather. What a lot of work for mayo. Hard to say anything about Mayo except that's why God made Hellman's. Interestingly this weekend, Gordon and I heard two great other uses for mayo. They are using mayo to clean the oil off of the ducks in the Gulf and mayo is great to use on the hair. This may lead to a new business venture for you. Keep on with the recipes and your blog.

  4. Heather, What can a person say about Mayo except that's why God made Hellman's. Although this weekend Gordon and I heard two more useful things for Mayo. They use Mayo to clean the ducks in the Gulf oil spill and they use mayo on hair. This could be a new business venture for you. Keep up the blog, we love it.

  5. I'm beginning to think the mayo recipe is wrong. I tried to get it to work with a similar food processor to your new one and to no avail. Using a different recipe, first time success, and I've done it before. The seasoning with lemon juice at the end is really unusual.