What’s the deal with everyone dipping everything in ranch dressing? I mean, I like ranch dressing, but when did it sneak in and become The Condiment?
I guess I understand; it’s creamy, it’s mild. It’s inoffensive enough to put on anything, and you get the extra fatty calories that make anything taste better.
Well, I am suggesting an update to The Condiment. Not to something healthier — of course not. But to something tastier. Something with a little bit of a kick to it. Something that still goes well with everything, but with an extra spicy boost.
Something like chipotle mayonnaise.
Who’s with me?
I’ll start off by saying, this recipe requires an immersion blender. I have this one, but they can be found for cheaper and they’re all pretty much the same. The price doesn’t even matter, because it will be worth it even if you only use it to make mayonnaise — it makes the process so much quicker. Seriously, the first time I made mayo from scratch, I figured it’d just be once for kicks. Lo and behold, I make it all the time. It’s so much better and it’s so quick and easy with a stick blender. Buy one. You won’t regret it. Also, you can use it to make pureed soups!
This recipe uses raw egg, which means two things:
Use fresh, local eggs if you can get ‘em. An excuse to go to the farmer’s market! The incidence of Salmonella poisoning from raw or undercooked eggs is very low (something like 1 in 30,000) but if you’re buying from a small farmer who cares about their chickens, you’re better off than buying from a factory farm. I’ve also seen the recommendation, since Salmonella usually lives on the shell rather than inside the egg, to put your egg in boiling water for five seconds before cracking it.
Children, the elderly, pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems may want to avoid eating your amazing mayo. You should disclose the raw egg status and let people decide on their own whether they want to take the (really tiny!) risk.
From-Scratch Chipotle Mayonnaise
1 egg, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon mustard, room temperature
1/2 teaspoons white vinegar
a wedge of lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup canola oil
2 chipotle peppers from the can
1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from the can the peppers were in)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Get yourself a clean and dry glass jar with a widemouth opening. I love the jars that roasted red peppers often come in — the head of my immersion blender fits perfectly. If you can’t find a jar that will accommodate yours, just make it in the beaker that came with your blender and transfer it when you’re done.
So throw your egg in there. Some people just use the yolk, I use the whole thing because I don’t have time for all this separating business — who does? Anyway, it works either way. Also, the finished product will look less yellow if you use the whole egg.
Add the mustard, vinegar, a couple squeezes of your lime wedge, salt, and oil. You can use up to a cup of oil if you want more mayonnaise. Unless I’m truly feeding a crowd, I make as little as possible to ensure I can get through it all. (If you use more oil, you’ll want to add more chipotles, adobo, garlic powder, and oregano to taste.)
An egg has a lot of water in it, and as we know, water and oil do not mix. So your oil will just sit there, separated, on top of everything else in the jar. Put your stick blender down to the very bottom of the jar. Turn that sucker on and watch the miracle of science right before your eyes.
The bottom of the contents of the jar will begun to emulsify, creating a thick, white, mayonnaise. Slowly raise the blender up out of the jar, bit by bit by bit and be amazed as the oil is incorporated and you’re left with a jar full of creamy mayo. You can obviously stop right here to have good old fashioned mayo (though I usually use lemon juice instead of lime for that).
But remember? Chipotle mayo!
Throw in the chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, garlic powder, and oregano, and go to town again with the immersion blender. Make sure you get the peppers finely chopped and everything is evenly distributed.
Now, this is the most important part. Taste it. Add freshly ground black pepper and/or more adobo sauce if you’d like to amp up the heat, and more of any of the seasonings if you feel they are underrepresented. Add more lime juice if you’d like to loosen up the consistency. Mix it all up and you’re good to go.
It really does taste the best if you give it at least 30 minutes to chill. Store it in your tightly sealed jar in the refrigerator. Use within 4 days ideally, but use your best judgment in how it looks and smells and sometimes you can get a week out of it if you’re lucky (or desperate). The good news is, it’s so easy to whip up a new batch that you don’t have to take the risk!
Serve as a dip with pretty much any kind of fried food. Spread on a sandwich. Use it to make egg or chickpea salad. Make my fabulous chipotle cheddar deviled eggs. Or just lick a little bit right off the spoon when nobody’s looking.