Month of April: “Salt Fat Acid Heat” Recipe” Classic Mayonnaise

“Oh my soul, sometimes we don’t know what to do. We work so hard being tough on our own, but now it’s me and you.” Climb on (A Back That’s Strong) from Shawn Colvin’s Fat City album

Day in and day out the news has all been about a mysterious highly contagious worldwide virus and the way I see it, a madman at the helm making everything worse. At times it truly appears like Armageddon is right around the corner. My heart aches for the sick and the suffering who are alone in the hospital without surrounding loved ones. Being a hospice nurse, I am well aware of what really goes on behind the scenes, behind those closed hospital doors. I am also conscious of the difficulty it must be for people waiting in long lines for food, unable to work, propelled into debt, maybe losing a business. So many stories left untold, too challenging for us to process. Feeling overwhelmed is an absolute understatement these days.

Meanwhile my studio lease will expire at the end of May and I was thinking that this blog means so little in the grand scheme of what is happening in every country on our planet. Who could have predicted that a pandemic would come along? I was beginning to accept that maybe my inspiration for this project was over and I could just coast to the end. However that wasn’t to be. I was about to be shot in the arm with hope. This week I received a comment from a reader that rearranged my resigning outlook. A woman, sheltering in place in Alaska, googled Tassajara cinnamon buns and my blog just happened to appear as a top option. She opened the link and apparently was touched. Come to find out not only had she read “Fair and Tender Ladies” the novel Abby and I loved (from previous post) but, here’s the crazy part…she was related to the author!! I mean, c’mon, what are the chances of that??? It was one of those moments where I knew with certainty that some kind of synchronous energy was playing with me and all I can say is that it was no damn coincidence. We really are all connected. Of course I immediately thought of Abby. I, being the kind of person I am, felt it was some kind of message from her. Like this lovely woman became a conduit between my soul living here in this space and Abby’s soul residing who knows where. It reignited my dwindling flame. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

So today I made real mayonnaise. It was a lesson in fat. Apparently one egg yolk can absorb almost a cup of oil that is whisked into it drop by drop. Isn’t that amazing? It’s a lesson in not only emulsion but in ultimate patience as well. I’ve always wanted to try my hand at this classic pantry staple that all good cooks apparently can easily whip up. So here it is, mine made with olive oil to be used on a sandwich, maybe some toasted white crusty home made bread, bacon, tomatoes, garlic and arugula? Yum, my appetite has returned.

Ingredients: 1 room temperature egg yolk, 3/4 cup olive oil

Add 1 egg yolk to a bowl, ceramic if possible. Add the oil ever so slowly, drop by drop at first while whisking the entire time. If the mayo gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of water to loosen it up. When you get half way through the oil you can add it in slightly larger pours. The key is very very slow. Store in fridge for 3 days.

2 Replies to “Month of April: “Salt Fat Acid Heat” Recipe” Classic Mayonnaise”

  1. Thank you Becca ~ this keeps getting better and better! So glad you will continue sharing with us. I am not a cooking/baking person, yet I am so happy to have at least another month of your wisdom from A Year at Portsmouth. Just sad that I didn’t get to sit in your studio with you… You are always in my heart. xoxox

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    1. Thank you Katya. There is a small stone turtle waiting for you there. Was hoping to give it you this visit. I will send it in the mail. xoxo

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