This week, I did things on the other way around: recipe first, nerdy explanation after ;)
Did you try the vegan mayo? When I tested the alternative mayos, I was breaking my neck on how to do a vegan one. If you read my post on mayo, you might know that it is an oil in water emulsion, whose formation requires some emulsifiers (e.g. lecithin and/or egg’s emulsifying proteins). But vegan people do not eat eggs! Substituting them with gelatin, which contains emulsifying proteins, is not an option because it is extracted from animal tissues. How can we do, then? Which food of vegetable origin contains lecithin and/or emulsifying proteins?
The lecithin experiment
I did a first attempt with soy lecithin. You can buy it in specialty stores, as Bulk Burn. After a first enthusiasm, the hard truth disrupted my glorious plans: lecithin is a bummer. It is a yellow, sticky powder (same color as egg yolk), which is not water-soluble and must be dissolved in warm fats (e.g. olive oil or seed oil around 50 ˚C). In addition, despite your patience and dedication, it doesn’t dissolve completely. Therefore, you’ll have to homogenize it with a blender :P I found lecithin a bit difficult to handle and its emulsifying properties are too poor to make a mayo. After 2-3 attempts, I threw everything out. Here the conclusions: lecithin itself is not enough, we also need emulsifying proteins to make a vegan mayo. But where can we find them?
Soy milk: good first take!
After a short search in the web, I discovered that vegan mayo is usually prepared with soy milk that, unsurprisingly, is rich in proteins and lecithin. This strategy allows obtaining a vegan mayo in the simplest way ever. We just need to mix all the ingredients and blend them with the immersion blender for 8-10 secs. A speedy vegan mayo. Without driving crazy in the attempt of dissolving lecithin!
Pros e cons of vegan mayo
Here my super personal and debatable list of pros and cons of this vegan mayo.
- Suitable for vegan people
- Suitable for egg-intolerants or, however, for those who want to follow an egg-free diet
- Higher food safety, due to the absence of raw eggs
- Overall, it is very close to a classic mayo, but...
- Mild taste (same problem as when we do not add the yolk)
- Light flavor of soy milk
Despite this initial success, I am not yet convinced this is the ultimate version. I would like to replace soy milk with something tasteless, in order to get rid of that floury aftertaste. I am thinking about using vegan proteins, instead, the type you find in the grocery stores as supplements. I might give it a try! Of course, if you have any suggestions, you are very welcome to leave them in the comments :)