Tuesday Tasting: Mayonnaise

MayoWe thought last week's boxed chicken stock tasting was yummy, but it had nothing on this week's culinary delight - prepared mayonnaise! What we don't do for our readers. This week we tasted three nationally available mayos alongside our homemade version. And for once, I'm going to tell you that the homemade was not our hands-down favorite. We tested the full fat versions - no low fat, no fat stuff here. And here's what we found...

Hellman's Real Mayo was the most bland/least flavorful of those we tasted. Like the others, it was made primarily from soybean oil. And at the standard serving size of 1 Tbsp., it weighed in at 90 calories, 90 mg of sodium and 10 g of fat.

Duke's, which many foodies swear by, was by far the creamiest and offered a slightly acidic flavor - all in all a good thing as a bit of acid (think vinegar/lemon juice) is often needed to cut through the heavy fattiness of mayonnaise. 1 Tbsp. of Duke's comes in at 100 calories, 75 mg of sodium and 12 g of fat.

Kraft featured the most acidic flavor of the three brands, and I would have to say ended up being my favorite. Not that this has anything to do with it, but it was also the whitest in color of the three brands. 1 Tbsp. comes in a 90 calories, 70 mg of sodium and 10 g of fat.

Our homemade mayo was just fine tasting but it was the oiliest to the touch. We used vegetable oil - which tends to end up being predominately soybean oil - to make the mayo. And if I was going to do it again, I would substitute a good quality olive oil instead with a bit of fresh garlic.

If you want to make your own, here's a good recipe. It's not difficult, but there is one technique that can trip you up - in order for the eggs and the oil to emulsify into mayonnaise, you have to introduce the oil very SLOWLY, all the while whisking vigorously. Keep that in mind and you'll have a lovely homemade mayonnaise. You can always employ the help of a blender or food processor to help slowly incorporate the oil. It makes it much easier to do if you're by yourself in the kitchen.

Bon appetit!

Homemade Mayonnaise

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 C. vegetable oil or olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (optional)

In a medium bowl, combine the egg yolk, mustard, vinegar and lemon juice. Slowly whisk in the oil until it emulsifies. If at any time there is an excess of oil, stop adding it and whisk until it is fully incorporated. Continue adding oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add garlic if you like.

Makes 1 Cup