A thick, creamy, cold sauce or dressing made by beating oil and egg yolks, usually with some wine vinegar, salt, pepper and mustard. Used to dress salads or combined with seafood, poultry, eggs or vegetables to make cold starters or main dishes. Mayonnaise forms the basis of all kinds of other sauces and dressings such as tartare sauce, aioli (garlic mayonnaise), Thousand Island dressing and rémoulade.
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Although it’s available ready-made in jars, tubs and tubes the flavour doesn’t compare to homemade and once you have the knack it’s simple. It’s easier to make if you have a blender as the key is to blend the oil in drop by drop to prevent the mayonnaise from curdling, which can be an exhausting job with a hand whisk! Because eggs can contain salmonella, it is important to ensure that you use pasteurised egg in dishes in which eggs will be uncooked or only lightly cooked. Pasteurised egg can be bought or in liquid or powder form. Commercially produced mayonnaise is almost always made with pasteurised egg, but if you are unsure, check with the retailer or manufacturer.
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