Saturday, May 2, 2015

Mayonnaise: Emulsifier

Continuing on with our unit about eggs, we learned that an egg is an emulsifier, which means it mixes together foods that would normally not be able to stay mixed together. We learned this concept when we made our own homemade mayonnaise.

However, before we started making the mayonnaise, we learned about oil and water (or other liquids). We mixed oil and water and saw that they don't blend together. Instead, the oil just bubbles up in the water and makes its own little blobs separate from the water. (We'll get back to this concept in a minute).

Just oil and water = not mixed!

- Glass bowl (2)
- Whisk
- Dry measuring cups
- Measuring spoons
- Liquid measuring cup

- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 2 pinches salt
- 2 teaspoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 cup oil

In a glass bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and the dry ingredients. Combine lemon juice and vinegar in a separate glass bowl then thoroughly whisk half into the yolk mixture. Start whisking briskly, then start adding the oil a few drops at a time until the liquid seems to thicken and lighten a little. Once you reach that point you can relax your arm a little bit (but not too much :) ) and increase the flow of oil to a constant stream (but still thin). Once half of the oil is in add the rest of the lemon juice mixture. Continue whisking until all of the oil is incorporated.

You're done! Keep refrigerated and enjoy!

During the process of making this mayonnaise, we witnessed emulsion. As one can see, we had both oil and liquids similar to water in the mayo. At first when we added oil and water together they didn't mix together. However, when we were making the mayonnaise, we had oil and liquids similar to water  plus an egg. The egg is what made the substances fully mix together. It's an emulsifier. Eggs are very important when it comes to making recipes like this.

Oil and liquids with an egg = fully mixed!

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