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If at first you don’t succeed, try and try and try and fail again

July 23, 2012

I was flipping through some food porn on the internet and ended up on Michael Ruhlman’s (the man who inspired me to make guanciale) blog. He had two videos that I quickly found. One was for homemade mayonnaise and the other was for pate a choux. If you are wondering what pate a choux is, it is a fancy name for a cream puff. Both recipes seemed quick and easy and involved ingredients I had on hand, so I thought why not?

I began with the pate a choux and found his recipe to be quick, simple and delicious. Ratio of equal parts water and egg and half that amount of flour and butter. Watch his video to get the full idea. The puffs and the “French Gnocchi” that he makes from the dough turned out beautifully. I now have a new dish to bring to parties. Here is a pic of 2 of the puffs about an hour later…a little deflated, but still yummy.

And then there was the mayonnaise..the fricking mayo! I did not think that something that is shown on so many websites and was touted by my mother as “easy” would be the end of me…but alas, I give up…for now. I wanted to use my new immersion blender (birthday gift) to make a quick mayo. I tried two different recipes. Here and here. Each time, I got a big gloppy mess of bright yellow oily liquid. I looked up reasons for emulsion failures. I tried different containers. I tried adding in egg yolk. I tried using my failed emulsion as the oil for a new mayo. Niente, niente, niente and niente…nothin. I used 4 eggs, a lemon, some lovely sea salt and a whole lotta canola oil to get this.

We all hear the adage, “if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again”…well, for today the mayo got the better of me. But I will attempt the mayo again…especially since I have insta cure #1 coming in the mail to help me smoke my own bacon. Must have homemade mayo to go on the DIY Gourmet BLT. I know, I have the bravado of a Michelin starred chef, with the professional and educational experience of a dish washer. But hey, the other saying I always hear is “go big or go home.”

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