The first snow has arrived early in the Pacific North-West and it is an early warning to get organized for holiday cooking. You are going to need mayo, because it is a great complement to all seafood, a lot of crudites, and can be used as a dip. Home-made mayonnaise tastes ten times better than the stuff from the store, and it only takes a couple minutes to whip up, literally!
Select the freshest jumbo egg you can find with a dark orange yolk if possible. Separate the yolk from the white and keep the white in the fridge for something else. In a bowl, start with the yolk, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, salt and pepper, stir with a whisk, a fork, or even a spoon. The key is to stir steadily in the same direction while you drizzle about half a cup of peanut oil in the bowl. When the mayonnaise is hard (it sticks to the spoon and you can draw a pattern on top) you are almost done. Just add a tbsp wine vinegar and stir it in. The amount of oil is not set exactly, it is what you need to obtain the consistency. Peanut oil van be replaced by canola or olive oil. Always keep mayo in the fridge before serving and discard any leftovers that were not refrigerated right away. Do not keep mayo more than 24 hours in any case.
There are many old-wives tales about women failing to make mayo, I guaranty you that they are just that. It is impossible to flunk mayo. If by incredible bad luck, the oil separated, you can add 2 tbsp hot water to the mix, stir vigorously and the mayo will “take” again. I think this was just a male excuse to keep women chefs out of the kitchen.
For sauce tartare, make twice this amount of mayo and at the end, add 1 tbsp capers, 1 pickle, 1 small shallot, 1/2 tsp tarragon, 1 tsp parsley, all chopped finely.