Thursday, August 25, 2011

Homemade Mayonnaise

Foolproof recipe and also a great base for a semi-aioli and other flavored condiments.

2 egg yolks
1 whole egg
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
healthy pinch of Salt
1 1/2 cups peanut oil *
2 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of 1/2 lemon

Add the eggs to a bowl of a food processor with the mustard and salt. Start the processor up in continuous mode (not pulse) and in the top opening **slowly** pour the peanut oil in. You should see a good emulsification by the time half of the oil has been added.
Once all is in, top off with the olive oil. Stop the processor, remove the top and add the lemon juice. Pulse to combine.
Scoop the mayo into a bowl to use, store, and/or add other flavorings.
I particularly like to pound a couple of cloves of garlic with a few fresh basil leaves and combine the resulting paste with a cup of the mayo for a sauce on salmon fillets.
This recipe should give you a mayo that stores in the frig for a couple of weeks.

* You could substitute any good oil like canola but I like the flavor that the peanut oil provides. I would recommend against using all olive oil as I find it to be way too overpowering, just a little goes a long way.

Note that adding the oil too quickly may cause the emulsification to fail so err on the side of going too slow.

I've also made mayo by hand with a whisk and one egg but it's a pain and doesn't seem to store more than a couple of days as the emulsification breaks down quickly.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Fusilli with no-cook tomato sauce

This is one of my favorite summer dishes once the tomatos start coming in the garden. Very simple to make but you're going to need very fresh tomatoes to make it.

I take a mix of whatever ripe tomatoes are available. For this one which I made this past week, I used a mix of Sungolds, Costoluto Genovese and Early Girls. 

3 cups of fresh garden tomatoes, chopped (keep seeds and skin intact)
1 garlic clove, peeled and halved
several leaves fresh basil, torn into pieces by hand
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons fresh-cracked black pepper
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound fusilli

Best to prepare the sauce ahead of time to allow it to sit and marinade for at least 1 hour but several hours is preferable.
Rub the cut side of each half of the garlic clove in a mixing bowl large enough to hold the chopped tomatoes. Add the tomatoes, season with the salt and pepper, then stir in the torn basil leaves. Pour in the olive oil and stir to mix thoroughly. Allow the sauce to marinade.
Boil water in a pot of the fusilli and cook according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and add to the bowl with the tomatoes and mix while the pasta is still hot. Serve immediately.

We served with a side of green beans also from the garden that we boiled for just about a minute, drained and mixed in salt, pepper and olive oil.

Final serving with some chianti and grated parmesan.