How to make your own Aioli (Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise) aka “Mayo”.
This is a New York Times-inspired recipe for a kitchen staple: Mayonnaise. Or, if you want to be all fancy-pants, Garlic Aioli: Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise. Once you’ve had homemade, you’ll never go back. Promise.
We needed some mayo the other night to make some Tyrant Farms Thai Red Curry Slaw using the cabbage, broccoli, and kohlrabi trimmings from the garden. Since we try not to keep pre-processed junk food in the house, that meant we had no mayo in the pantry.
With about 3-4 lbs of succulent leafy greens needing a new home in a big bowl of slaw, we had no choice but to whip up some of our homemade garlic mayonnaise.
This is a ridiculously simple recipe, but it is more time-consuming than getting out that big blah-flavored jar of grocery store mayo.
The trick to good mayonnaise (or Aioli, if you prefer to leave out the vinegar and use it as a sauce) is making sure that the oil emulsifies with the egg…
- Oil + Egg emulsified together = yum.
- Oil + Egg not emulsified together = Oil + Egg semi-mixed floating together in a bowl with some bits of garlic. Not yum.
Once we mastered this simple recipe, we almost always have a small jar of Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise in the fridge. It’s great for use in coleslaw, sandwiches, and veggie dips.
Our personal favorite use for a cool, fall-winter meal? Chop root veggies (beets, onions, turnips, potatoes, rutabagas, etc) into 1″ squares, then toss them in a bowl with EV olive oil and pink sea salt until evenly coated. Put them in a pre-heated 350° oven for about 20-30 minutes, or until they’re soft all the way through with a fork + slightly browned.
Once removed, let them cool for a few minutes then serve them on a platter with a bowl of Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise in the middle for use as a dipping sauce. So. Dang. Good.
No matter how you decide to use your Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise, you’ll absolutely love the flavor it provides. You’ll also enjoy knowing that your own homemade mayo was created with love using all healthy ingredients that you can pronounce.
One last tip: this recipe is way easier and faster to make if you use an immersion blender. Our personal fave is the Swiss-made Bamix immersion blender, which we use almost daily since we cook a lot. An immersion blender is far easier to use and clean than a food processor, and will quickly become your favorite kitchen tool!
Recipe: Aioli (Provençal Garlic Mayonnaise) aka "Mayo"
- 4-8 Cloves of Garlic
- 2 local Duck or Chicken Eggs or 4 Egg Yolks - 100% yolks will yield a creamier, richer sauce
- 1 C. Safflower or Grapeseed Oil
- 1 C. Extra Virgin Olive Oil *if you use duck eggs you may need a bit more oil since duck eggs tend to be larger than chicken eggs
- Dash of Paprika
- Dash of Cayenne
- Pinch of Dried Mustard
- Salt to taste
- 2-4 Tbsp Vinegar or Lemon Juice We used apple cider vinegar most recently, but have tried it with white, champagne, and rice wine vinegars. They all work well
Chop up your garlic and put it in a mortar and pestle. Smash it until it's a creamy paste. A pinch of salt sometimes aids the process. The goal is to get the flavor infused throughout the Mayonnaise (sliced garlic chunks or a regular garlic smasher won't accomplish this nearly as well as a creamy paste).
As mentioned above the recipe a Bamix immersion blender can be used to really speed up this recipe and still get great results. If you don't have an immersion blender, just stick with the manual recipe instructions!
Once you're done, if you have a large enough mortar & pestle, add your egg yolks (or whole eggs) to the garlic and mix with the pestle until smooth. If you don't have one, transfer the garlic to a glass bowl and add your egg yolks, mixing together until smooth.
This next step is where the time-consuming part begins... but it's SO IMPORTANT that you do it right, or you'll end up with egg + oil, not mayo.
If you used a mortar & pestle in step 2, you'll probably need to transfer everything to a bigger glass bowl before you begin. VERY slowly, start to whisk the 1C Safflower or Grapeseed oil into your egg and garlic mixture. It's best to start with the lighter oils because they emulsify better than a heavier oil like olive oil. An immersion blender will help speed up the process. Otherwise, you can use good ole manual labor and a whisk.
About 1/2 C oil in, you'll start to notice the oil emulsifying with the egg and the mixture will start to stiffen. It's very rewarding! Keep going, slowly adding more oil, until it's done.
Once you've added in the first cup of oil, slowly begin whisking in the additional 1C of extra virgin olive oil. You don't have a to go as slowly with the olive oil as you did with the first cup, but I do recommend keeping it to a slow, steady stream. By the time you're done you should have a nice, stiff, creamy sauce.
At this point, you've got the base for your Aioli and your Mayo. The main difference between the two is the addition of Vinegar. If your goal is to have a Garlic Aioli, simply mix in your salt, other spices and some lemon juice - refrigerate, and serve.
If you're trying to make Garlic Mayonnaise, slowly add in a small amount of Vinegar to your base, stir, and taste. Adjust accordingly. <em>Remember:</em> you can always add more, but you can't take away. Patience, grasshopper, patience. Once you have the proper amount of tang, add in any additional desired spices and/or lemon juice, refrigerate, and use as needed.
For a Thai take on things, red or green curry paste (~2 Tbsp) or curry powder is delicious! The mayonnaise pictured above has red curry &amp;amp; paprika. For tartar sauce, add some minced onion and 2Tbsp of sweet relish. Experiment. Try different flavorings to make fun sandwich spreads... Farm-raised chopped bacon, fresh garden chives, chopped walnuts, or some smashed avocado. The main thing is to be creative and enjoy!
You now have yummy mayo or aioli that you can use as a dipping sauce or as an ingredient in tons of great recipes. Enjoy!
Let us know how your homemade mayo or aioli turned out, and what you used it on!