29 August 2017

38 Delicious Ways to make Flavoured Mayonnaise(s?)!


As you may remember, weeks ago (I’ve been busy!) I said I was going to do a series of blogs on great things to keep in the storecupboard and, further, that the first one would be about mayonnaise.  Well I lied!  The first two are going to be about mayonnaise!


Good idea! Pin this
to refer to later.

I started writing this post by saying how easy it is to make all sorts of deliciously flavoured mayonaisses (what is the plural of mayonnaise?) rather than buying in all the different ones but I had so many ideas it is a post in itself. My next one will be on delicious ways to use them.

There are so many temptingly flavoured mayos on the market, but all of them are easy to replicate at home.  Such variety was certainly not available where I used to work as a chef (small island in the Caribbean) so I made all sorts of different mayonnaise sauces myself. I see no need to change this now I just cook domestically in the UK.

If you have a jar of bought in mayonnaise (light is fine, that's what I always use) or even homemade mayonnaise you can make all of these.


~  38 Mayonnaise Flavours to Create at Home ~


All the quantities below are for 120g mayonnaise but don’t take them as gospel!

You may well like to add a little salt, or you may not, lemon juice will brighten most flavours so add a squeeze if you’ve got it, garlic is good in lots of things, so is black pepper ~ experiment!
taste-and-season-tips

It is important to remember, when using fresh ingredients, that even when combined with mayonnaise they can still go off so the following suggestions do have a limited shelf life, just make what you need.

fresh-herb-mayonnaise

Fresh Herb Mayonnaise


You need about 15g-20g of fresh herbs per 120g mayonnaise, either finely chop the herbs and stir in or purée the whole herb leaves with the mayonnaise. Use soft leaf herbs, I don’t think rosemary, for instance, will work for this. Try …

~   Dill or Fennel Mayonnaise - for fish, add some lemon juice too.

~   Lemon & Parsley Mayonnaise – add chopped parsley to the lemon butter below!

~   Basil Mayonnaise – purée whole basil leaves with the mayonnaise, taste and season – this is lovely, I used to serve it with seafood mixed grill.
watercress-recipe
~   Watercress Mayonnaise – purée a small handful of watercress together with mayonnaise and a little lemon juice. This is perfect with poached salmon and good with all sorts of other things too.

~   Etc. – so many herbs, you have a go!

Or make a …

~   Mixed Herb Mayonnaise – a good combination would be ½ tablespoon each of chopped parsley, tarragon, chives, basil and a clove of garlic or do a Provençal Mayonnaise with

I’d just like to say a bit of chopped parsley, or other suitable herb, may enhance and definitely will make almost any of the following look prettier.

Fresh Fruit or Vegetable Mayonnaise


spring-onion-mayonnaise
~   Scallion Mayonnaise – a very simple but impressive dressing is made by puréeing half a bunch of coarsely chopped spring onions (scallions) with the mayonnaise. This makes a delicious potato salad

~   Roasted Butternut Squash Mayonnaise! - what a delicious surprise this was! You really should try it.

how-to-make-garlic-mayonnaise

~   Garlic Mayonnaise – aka Aioli. Add up to 1 (or maybe more - this is very much a matter of taste) very well crushed clove of garlic to the mayonnaise, a squeeze of lemon is good too. Sometimes I add a wincy pinch of turmeric to this so that it looks more homemade and authentically Mediterranean and I call it Aioli!


fresh-ginger-dressing

~   Ginger Mayonnaise – stir in 2 teaspoons of finely grated fresh ginger plus 2 teaspoons of the citrus juice of your choice.


~   Mango Mayonnaise – stir in 1-2 tbsp puréed fresh mango and add a squeeze or lime juice and/or a few drips of hot sauce.

citrus-mayonnaise
~   Orange/Lemon/Lime Mayonnaise – stir in 3 teaspoon of juice a spoonful at a time, the mayonnaise will thicken slightly. Taste and season and maybe add some finely grated zest. (Handy Hint – if you are going to use the zest grate it off the fruit before juicing, it is much easier that way.) Orange mayonnaise goes well with seafood and duck to name just two. Lemon mayonnaise is good with fish, of course, and lots more. Try adding black pepper to make, guess what? Lemon pepper mayonnaise! Lime is lovely with seafood and spicy things.

~   Caramelised Onion Mayonnaise – see here for how to caramelise onions (it’s my favourite way to cook onions, caramelised or not) and then, when they are utterly cold, stir or purée 1½ tablespoons of them into the mayonnaise.

Cooked Fruits or Vegetables

apple-sauce-mayonnaise


~   Apple Mayonnaise – stir in 1-2 tbsp apple sauce (recipe here). Season to taste and serve with ham/pork/bacon/sausage type dishes and it makes a great dressing for coleslaw.





~   Roasted Garlic Mayonnaise – mash 6 roasted garlic cloves l and stir into the mayonnaise. 

I must make a confession here; I love roasted garlic mayonnaise and usually get it from M & S!!! This is because my real man doesn’t like the smell of garlic, even when its roasting, so I kindly don’t fill our tiny home with its aroma.

~   Roasted Pepper Mayonnaise – finely chop 2 tablespoons of roasted red pepper (home cooked or bought in a jar) and mix into the mayonnaise.  Maybe add a little chopped parsley for prettiness.

From your storecupboard


These will have a longer shelf life than the fresh additions above.

dijonnaise

~   Mustard Mayonnaise – add 1½ tablespoons of Dijon mustard OR wholegrain mustard or a mixture of both.

~   Honey Mustard Mayonnaise – replace half a tablespoon of mustard in the above ‘recipe’ with runny honey.

~   Horseradish Mayonnaise – stir in ½ - 1 tbsp horseradish sauce plus a little lemon juice and season to taste. Due to an enzyme in the horseradish this tends to thicken considerably over time so don’t make it too much in advance.

~   Sweet Chilli Mayonnaise – stir 3 teaspoons of sweet chilli sauce and 2 teaspoons of lime juice into the mayo.

green-chilli-mayonnaise
~   Green Chilli Mayonnaise – I make this using Patak’s wonderful Green Chilli Pickle  (I am sure there are others too). It is VERY potent so start cautiously and abstemiously with, say, a scant ¼ teaspoon of the pickle stir it in, add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice and taste.  Add little more if you wish. This is great with chicken and fish, especially fish and chips as a kind of feisty tartare sauce substitute and it makes a lovely dressing for chicken salad.

~   Mango Chutney Mayonnaise – take 1-2 tbsp mango chutney and finely chop the lumps. Stir into the mayonnaise perhaps with a little citrus juice, This is good with duck, spicy dishes and seafood.

~   Chipotle Mayonnaise – stir in a little or a lot of chipotle paste, start with about ½ a teaspoon and work your way up.

wasabi-mayonnaise

~   Wasabi Mayonnaise – mix ½ tablespoon of wasabi powder to a paste with 1 teaspoon of water, stir it in and see what you think of it.  Bit of lemon juice maybe? Touch more wasabi? Lovely with tuna.

~   Caper Mayonnaise – add a tablespoon of finely chopped capers, a squeeze of lemon juice and maybe some finely grated zest if you have some.  Perfect for salmon or, even better, smoked salmon. Or make your own ...

~   Tartare Sauce

120g mayonnaise
½ tbsp finely chopped capers
½ tbsp finely chopped gherkins
juice of ¼ lemon

~   Mix all together. That’s it.

~   Pesto Mayonnaise – add 1 tablespoon pesto to the mayonnaise.

~   Tapenade Mayonnaise – (quite a few tapenades in Tesco to choose from!) stir 1½ tbsp of tapenade plus some chopped parsley and black pepper into the mayonnaise.

~   Green Peppercorn Mayonnaise – drain and finely chop 2 tbsp green peppercorns, stir into the mayonnaise and serve with steak, to name just one idea.

caesar-salad-dressing


~   Anchovy Mayonnaise - very finely chop 4 or 5 tinned anchovies and stir into the mayonnaise. Add some lemon juice but NO salt unless you are a maniac.  Take this further and make …




~   Caesar Dressing for Cheats

1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 oz shredded Parmesan
2-3 anchovies
juice of half a lemon
dash of Worcestershire sauce
good grind of black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp mayonnaise

~   In a food processor or liquidiser blend together all the ingredients down to the olive oil.
~   When smooth add the mayonnaise and give it a quick whizz.
~   Taste and season but I doubt it will need anything – almost definitely NOT salt.

~   Sesame Mayonnaise – add 1 tsp (or a little more) sesame oil and season to taste with a little salt or soy sauce. Some good additions to this would be sesame seeds, toasted sesame seeds (even better) and/or finely chopped spring onions or a teaspoon of finely grated fresh ginger.  Speaking of which …

~   BBQ Mayonnaise – this is 2 tablespoons of BBQ sauce stirred in together with a good grind of black pepper.

prawn-cocktail-sauce
~   Marie Rose Sauce for Prawn Cocktail etc.

120g mayonnaise
1½ tbsp tomato ketchup
a little hot sauce or Worcestershire sauce


~   Mix all together – a splash of brandy or vodka is good in this too!

Spiced Mayonnaise

peppered-mayonnaise
~   Black Pepper Mayonnaise – obviously the way to make this is to grind in as much black (or mixed)pepper as you like. Add a little lemon juice if you fancy it.

~   Curry Mayonnaise – stir in 3 teaspoons of curry powder and 2 teaspoons of lemon or lime juice. Add a little chopped fresh coriander if you have some.

~   Red or Green Curry Mayonnaise – add 2 tsp of whichever curry paste you are using plus a squeeze of lime juice and, as with above, a little coriander if you have it.

saffron-recipes
~   Saffron Mayonnaise – heat a small frying pan and add 4 or 5 saffron threads. Toss around for a few seconds till the saffron is a little darker. Remove from the pan and cool. Crush the saffron in a pestle and mortar to a powder, add a clove of garlic and crush to smooth. Stir into the mayonnaise, taste and season with salt and lemon juice. 

~   Smoky Paprika Mayonnaise – ½ tsp smoked paprika and a squeeze of lime. 

 A Few More Mayonnaise Ideas

saffron-threads

~   Bacon Mayonnaise aka Baconnaise– see how to make bacon salt here (it is so delicious and useful you might as well make some) and prepare the bacon as instructed.  Instead of crushing it with the salt, crush it all alone and stir into the mayonnaise.
 
~   Blue Cheese Mayonnaise – mix in about 60g of crumbled blue cheese. Black pepper is great in this. Good with beef, salads containing pears and lots more.

~   Black Garlic Mayonnaise I LOVE black garlic so, naturally, I make this a lot! Mash 2 black garlic cloves to a paste and stir into the mayonnaise. Maybe add some black pepper. This goes great with steak, blue cheese and licked off the spoon, to name just a few ways to enjoy it.
black-garlic-mayonnaise

38 is quite a few suggestions but if you think of any more please let me know!

My next post will be on lot of ways to use mayonnaise, flavoured or otherwise.

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3 August 2017

Why You Should Keep a Well Stocked Storecupboard


First a bit of backstory …

About 3 years ago my book, The Leftovers Handbook, was published. It is now undergoing a makeover and the new addition, which will be called Creative Ways to Use Up Leftovers will be published next March.  It seems ages to wait but, on the other hand, time seems to pass so quickly it probably won’t take long!!

Whilst discussing this new edition the possibility of a follow up book, on Storecupboards, was mooted but now seems to have fallen by the wayside, maybe it will be taken up again later.  However, as I’ve started thinking about the matter I’ve decided to do some blog posts on the things I personally like to keep in stock and how I use them to spontaneously create all sorts of meals. 


storecupboard-essentials


Why Should You Keep a Well-Stocked Storecupboard?


A properly stocked pantry is very important if you want to cook spontaneously and make the most of lucky finds and leftovers.

It’s no good picking up a bargain or a wonderful food discovery, being inspired and then not having the wherewithal! A well-stocked storecupboard (and fridge) allows you to be both spontaneous and creative.

Say, for instance, you are lucky enough to find some lovely fish. A very simple preparation that might please the whole family is ...

Roasted Fish


This is fine for one or several pieces of fish so long as they are all similar sizes, otherwise some will cook faster than others.

~   Preheat oven to 180ºC/350°F/160ºC fan/gas 4.
~   Season the fish with salt and pepper and rub with a little oil or butter.
~   Place, not touching, on a baking tray and roast for 10-15 minutes till the fish flakes easily if you poke it – the timing will depend on the thickness of the fish so keep an eye on it.



simple-roasted-fish


Now then, according to your storecupboard you could vary this wildly simply by adding ginger, garlic, chilli or Thai green curry paste, sumac, chipotle, blackening spice, herbs, lemon zest, chopped capers etc. to the butter before rubbing it on the fish.  See more about flavoured and compound butters here.  (I accidentally typed compound buggers at first, there, but I think you need a different type of blog for information on those!)

Once you have coated the fish in oil or butter, seasoned just how you like it, you could, if you wished, roll it in a little flour before roasting to give a fragile crust.


baked-salmon

Panko Crusted Fish


Fish is often served with a crisp coating such as breadcrumbs or a batter (lots of coatings for fried food here) but the best coating to use at home (in my opinion), is lovely crunchy Japanese panko crumbs, which I always have in stock.  Just roll the buttered fish in the crumbs and bake till crisp. 

panko-crusted-seafood


Incidentally panko crumbs are a storecupboard staple for me and I have already written about them in this appropriately titled post ~ Panko! 

I often serve this with sautéed potatoes and Green Chilli Mayonnaise – simply made by stirring together a very little Patak’s Green Chilli Pickle (storecupboard), Mayonnaise (fridge) and a squeeze of lemon (fridge or fruit bowl) but you might have Tartare Sauce in your cupboard, or you could mix something else into the mayonnaise such tomato ketchup to make a simple Marie Rose sauce (if you happen to have a little brandy in your storecupboard it is a great addition to this), or how about Sweet Chilli Sauce or go all exotic and add chopped preserved lemons or tapenade – the list is endless and it’s up to you! 

Another quickly impressive way to cook your fish in the oven is in a parcel as with this ...

Baked Fish with Tomato & Coconut


For this I use creamed coconut, another of my storecupboard staples.

1 can chopped tomatoes – perhaps with chilli
100g creamed coconut
½ tsp green chilli pickle (mentioned above) or curry paste or chilli powder or whatever you fancy to make the mixture taste gorgeous to you
grated zest and juice of ½ a lime or lemon, maybe

~   Gently heat together the tomatoes and creamed coconut and stir together till melted.
~   Add the chilli pickle/curry paste/seasoning plus maybe lime or lemon zest and juice to taste.
~   Cool. (That is an instruction, not a comment).
~   Season a nice piece of fish per person and sear in a little oil till browning on both sides – this is because, being wrapped in a parcel, it won’t brown in the oven.
~   Place on a piece of buttered foil.
~   Spread a tablespoon or a little more of the coconut stuff over each piece of fish.
~   Fold the foil loosely round the fish and filling.
~   Bake as above, maybe for slightly less time as it has already been seared.

When I worked as a chef in the Caribbean I used to bake this in a banana leaf but a piece of foil works just as well, it just doesn’t look so impressive!

fish-baked-in-a-banana-leaf


Now for me I would have all these options (and then some) without having to give it another thought or buy anything else, because I am always prepared. You can build up your storecupboard over time, it doesn’t have to be a one off big expense and, with many of these things, not only do they have a long shelf life but also a little goes a long way.

So, the above was by way of an introduction to this occasional series which I shall be writing quite randomly, i.e. in no particular order. I have no intention of writing about such storecupboard basics as flour, sugar etc. but rather the things that I always keep in and the many ways I use them. Think I’ll start with mayonnaise – coming soon!









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