There is no denying that France is renowned for its cheese, fine dining, wide variety of wines and impressive desserts. As far as I can remember, preparing food for a dozen guests has never made my mum remotely stressed. It got me thinking, and trying to figure out why she is always so relaxed when entertaining friends and family.
I am not sure whether it is the same for every French family, but we use a lot of shortcuts at home. For example, the cake for a party is quite often bought at the local boulangerie (bakery) rather than being homemade. As for seafood, like mussels, oysters or king prawns, they come ready to eat or do not need more than ten minutes to prepare.
When Seafish asked me to try and encourage people to eat more fish, I thought this quick, easy recipe might be a nice incentive to try something new without too much hassle. If you buy cooked king prawns from the fishmonger’s, all you have to do is make mayonnaise, and it takes less than five minutes.
You can even make mayonnaise the day before you intend to serve it, give it a stir and check the seasoning at the last minute.
My mum peels the king prawn for my brothers because they do not like doing it themselves. Seriously!
I love a dish that has the ‘wow’ factor and requires very little effort!
My Mamie (nan) taught me how to make mayonnaise when I was a teenager. It is quick, straightforward to make, and so much nicer than shop-bought stuff.
If you have never made mayonnaise before, you should really give it a go. It is the best thing with chicken for a picnic, cold turkey on Boxing Day, potato salad, meat or sandwiches. One of my favourite things is dipping baguette in mayonnaise. I usually end up eating half a baguette just like that!
Homemade Mayonnaise in 5 Minutes
- 1 free-range egg yolk at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard at room temperature
- 200 ml sunflower oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a bowl, mix the egg yolk and mustard with a teaspoon.
- Add a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Using a handheld mixer on low speed, add 2 tablespoons of oil until the mixture thickens and forms peaks. Increase the speed of the whisk and add 2 more tablespoons of oil.
- When the mixture starts to form peaks again, add 2 more tablespoons of oil and repeat the process until all the oil has been used.
- Still whisking, add in the vinegar.
- Adjust seasoning and voilà!
Mayonnaise will keep well in the fridge in an airtight container for a couple of days.
Seafish challenged me to write recipes to encourage people to eat more fish. I did not receive payment for this post. All photographs are my own.