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The Theoretical Cook


Monday, March 20, 2006

Homemade Mayonaisse and Pinoy Chicken Salad

It all began with the cookie recipe. The recipe called for 3 egg whites so I was left with 3 egg yolks. What to do with the egg yolks - that was the question that I had to grapple with. Not enough for leche flan. I was running out of ideas. And then suddenly, while flipping through Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything, I saw it: Basic Mayonaisse. The recipe called for a food processor or blender. From the things that Ive read, the mark of a true home cook is making his/her own mayonaisse. I rose to the challenge, inspired by the simplicity of the recipe.

I dunked the three egg yolks into the blender and then added 2 tablespoons of vinegar plus 2 tablespoons of water plus one cup of canola oil ( I poured it in a steady thin stream). I then added salt and pepper to taste. The resulting substance looked smooth but watery. The original recipe looked like this: one yolk, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 cup canola oil, plus salt and pepper. You were supposed to pour 1/4 cup of oil into the egg mixture very slowly. Then pour the rest in a steady stream until the substance becomes firm. My version had three egg yolks so in order to adjust the proportions, I added another cup of oil, and when it still didnt look thick enough, still another cup of oil. I would have continued adding oil if it werent for the fact that I had ran out of canola oil. So I stopped. My mayonaisse didnt look like the Lady's Choice mayo. Mine was not firm, kind of pinkish- yellowish, felt oily to the tongue, and my sister said: Malansa. Well, it didnt taste malansa to me. It tasted like something that wanted to become mayonaisse. I put the mayonaisse inside the ref. Thirty minutes later, I checked on it, and I saw that it looked more mayonaiss-y than thirty minutes before. And so, there and then, I decided that I will not let the mayonaisse go to waste. I decided I was going to make a Chicken Salad.
Heres my recipe.

Pinoy Chicken Salad


1 whole chicken (cut into pieces)
2 cups mayonaisse (plus more if you prefer thicker dressing)
1 cup raisins
1 can pineapple chunks
1 whole onion
1 half cup processed cheese
2 cups elbow macaroni (the smallest packet)

1) Boil the chicken until its tender enough for flaking. ( I use this as an excuse to make chicken stock. Just add a cup each of carrot and onion, half a cup of celery, bayleaf, fresh parsley, and salt and pepper). This usually takes 45 minutes to 1 hour (Quick Chicken Stock)
2) Boil the elbow macaroni for 12 to 14 minutes. Then put the cooked pasta in a colander. Let cool.
3) Chop the onions and combine with the mayo. Season with salt and pepper.
4) Put the cooked pasta and the chicken pasta onto a bowl. Slather with the mayo mixture.
5) Add the raisins and pineapple chunks.
6) Add grated cheese (optional).
7) Serve.

Did I like the Pinoy Chicken Salad with my homemade mayonaisse? I like Chicken Salad and I think no one can really 'murder' Pinoy chicken salad for me. The texture and taste of pineapple and raisins and chicken go so well together. Pineapple gives a tartness and sweetness which makes a good contrast too the saltiness of the chicken. The raisins also provide a pleasant taste, a sweet richness. I was thinking I should add some nuts, maybe cashew, in my next version. However, I had serious issues with the mayonaisse: 1) I kept thinking of salmonella, 2) I kept thinking of 'malansa'. My sister said the salad was great though and that the mayonaisse tasted like true mayo (Secret: I added Best Foods Salad Dressing).

POSTSCRIPT:The fate of the leftover Homemade Mayonaisse. 12:27 PM today while at work, received message from housemate: "Ummm, 'te, may kasalanan kami. Akala namin soup, na-consume namin yung mayo in a wrong way...Minicrowave. Patawad! Patawad! Patawad!!!


Blogger JMom said...

LOL! I love the postscript :-D I have to admit, I've never tried making my own mayonnaise before. People around here are so salmonella phobic that not too many people attempt using raw eggs for any dishes. There is a process called coddling where you immerse the eggs in boiling water for a minute of two before processing them in a mayonnaise mixture, but again, I've been to chicken to try it. Kudos to you for attempting it...but you guys probably get fresher eggs there than we do.

5:26 AM  
Blogger relly said...

Hello, just an advise, to take out the fishy taste, or malansa, add a spoon of lemon, or i only have calamansi here i'll venture on it, the color will lighten up and the taste better. Here we ususally make our own mayonnaise when we eat seafoods and the likes. Or with cold fish dishes. Don't expect to get the same texture of industrial type of mayonnaise.
The secret to get perfect mayo, the yolk should be cold, and at the start you just drop a very little amount of oil while stirring and venture with one yolk at the start.. If i failed, i'll get another yolk and restart the process then add the failed mayo.

6:13 AM  
Blogger Theoretical Cook said...

Hi Jmom,
Found the postscript funny too:) I was kind of chicken about the mayonaisee-laced chicken salad too. Have been studiously avoiding it. Mark Bittman has a recipe for salmonella-free mayonaisse involving frequent (3) microwave exposures. Will post his recipe when I have the book at hand.

Dear Relly,
I had calamansi! Somehow it didnt enter my head. Thats why I used the vinegar as the liquid. I will try making that mayo again this weekend. Thanks for the tip!

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