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Recipe: Fermented Mayonnaise
We ferment a lot. But, if we’re being honest, the idea of fermenting mayo gave us the heebie-jeebies. Mayonnaise is the quintessential food poisoning warning. We spent a decade of schooling worried that our brown-bagged turkey sandwich would kill us by lunch. So even though we knew we could make a fermented mayonnaise, and that we very likely should make it, we kept putting it off.
Instead, to ready ourselves for cookout season we would made batch after batch of Fermented Ketchup and Fermented Mustard. We packed our fermentation jars with Lacto-Fermented Pickles and Classic Sauerkraut. We made extras to bring along to friends’ backyard parties. And we guiltily kept dragging out the store-bought mayo. When we finally pushed our irrational fears aside and made homemade fermented mayo, we wondered why we had waited so long.
Making mayonnaise from scratch is super simple. The only equipment you really need is a whisk (but it will come together just as well and a bit quicker using a blender or food processor). With homemade mayo you can use better quality oils than the stuff you’ve been purchasing from the store. Mayonnaise is mostly oil (held in magical suspension through emulsion) so your mayo is going to taste very much like the oil you’re using. For a classic mayo choose a neutral oil like canola or grapeseed, for something more flavorful use your favorite olive oil. We also recommend sourcing the best eggs you can and letting them come to room temp before mixing.
The only additional ingredients you need are lemon juice (or vinegar for a sharper acidity), a couple tablespoons of whey (strained from a yogurt with live cultures) and a little bit of salt and Dijon mustard. Your homemade mayonnaise will come together in less than 10 minutes (even if you’re whisking by hand) and only needs 6 hours to ferment, so there is definitely time for you whip up a batch ahead of your next cookout.
Tip: You can also use a blender, food processor, or immersion blender for this recipe - just add the ingredients in the same order and add the oil in super slowly.