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Mayonnaise/Why does the jarred stuff last


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Doesn't Hellman's also contain sugsr? I recall a distinct sweetness in the taste. For me that's an unwanted flavor, although sugar should also act as a preservative. Nevertheless this is what started the discussion:

We checked the ingredients on the jar in the fridge (Trader Joe's) and it was oil, eggs, egg yolks, spice, vinegar and lemon juice.  They make a point of pride in saying there are no preservatives, sugar, etc.

So far pasturization and its cousin sterilization are the only things we've mentioned that seem plausible. A reduction in the amount of egg yolk, assuming the brands without stabilizers or preservatives use frozen yolks, might be a small factor as well.

Delouis Fils Fresh Mayonnaise seems to be a superior product when compared with most bottled mayos, but I thought its shelf life, sealed or unsealed, was much shorter than Hellman's. How does the Trader Joe's brand compare?

Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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It really helps to have a 30-quart mixer available when you need to make that much mayo.  I think that's the size we used at Le Bernardin when I was there.  Every few days.  :blink:  But since then I can do it in my sleep.

I am no 4 Star chef.... sorry! :sad:

I just used Hellman's. :shock:

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Jin -- do you have Hellman's-in-a-squeeze-bottle up there?  (Plain and/or flavored)  If so, what do you think of it?  For that matter, what does ANYBODY think of it?  Apart from it being a rip-off, pricewise?  :angry:  I doubt the "Garlic Paradise" version will ever replace real aioli for me -- but maybe it will for people who eat in chain restaurants?  :rolleyes:  :biggrin:

eew.....yuck...

DO they really make a garlic mayo? Who would buy that?

You are teasing Jinmyo and I? For we admit to using Hellman's.... I am sure this is a bad joke.

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Jin -- do you have Hellman's-in-a-squeeze-bottle up there?  (Plain and/or flavored)  If so, what do you think of it?  For that matter, what does ANYBODY think of it?  Apart from it being a rip-off, pricewise?  :angry:   I doubt the "Garlic Paradise" version will ever replace real aioli for me -- but maybe it will for people who eat in chain restaurants?  :rolleyes:  :biggrin:

eew.....yuck...

DO they really make a garlic mayo? Who would buy that?

You are teasing Jinmyo and I? For we admit to using Hellman's.... I am sure this is a bad joke.

Oh, I just saw a commercial for this last night. They make an herb flavor and a tomato/bacon flavor, too. :unsure:

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Jin -- do you have Hellman's-in-a-squeeze-bottle up there?  (Plain and/or flavored)  If so, what do you think of it?  For that matter, what does ANYBODY think of it?  Apart from it being a rip-off, pricewise?  :angry:   I doubt the "Garlic Paradise" version will ever replace real aioli for me -- but maybe it will for people who eat in chain restaurants?  :rolleyes:  :biggrin:

eew.....yuck...

DO they really make a garlic mayo? Who would buy that?

You are teasing Jinmyo and I? For we admit to using Hellman's.... I am sure this is a bad joke.

Oh, I just saw a commercial for this last night. They make an herb flavor and a tomato/bacon flavor, too. :unsure:

I am so glad I do not own a TV and have no cable access.

Just my video and DVD players and a 20 inch computer monitor.

No such torture for me to endure. :wink:

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Bux: I checked the jar of TJ's mayo for the date. We bought it a couple of weeks ago and the sell by date is January 25th, 2003. Don't know how the shelf life compares with Hellman's.

Heck we always have a jar of mayonnaise in the fridge. Sorry, when I'm making tuna salad at one a.m. for lunchbox sandwiches, I don't have the energy to make homemade. But, come to think of it, I do have the energy to root around the fridge for that small bottle of cornichons that always disappears when I need it.

Thanks for all the input.

Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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I'm not sure Hellman's is even marked with a "sell by" date, although there's probably some industry code. Even after it's opened, I think the refrigerator life is pretty long. Is the TJ stuff bottled and sttting on a shelf, or in a refrigerator case?

Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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Jin -- do you have Hellman's-in-a-squeeze-bottle up there?  (Plain and/or flavored)  If so, what do you think of it?  For that matter, what does ANYBODY think of it?  Apart from it being a rip-off, pricewise?  :angry:   I doubt the "Garlic Paradise" version will ever replace real aioli for me -- but maybe it will for people who eat in chain restaurants?  :rolleyes:  :biggrin:

eew.....yuck...

DO they really make a garlic mayo? Who would buy that?

You are teasing Jinmyo and I? For we admit to using Hellman's.... I am sure this is a bad joke.

1. Yes, they now make a line of several different flavored mayonnaises, all in squeeze bottles. As I recall, the "herb" one is just (or mostly) parsley (no doubt dried). I'll bet a lot of people who LOVE mayonnaise and think they'll be a little adventuresome will buy it. Ahem, I bought it, but only because I love to try new products to see if they are as horrible as I fear they will be. This one is; it tastes like, well, Hellman's "Light" mayo with garlic powder mixed in. Not an unpleasant texture except for being too stiff, but ugh that acrid taste. Now, the Hellman's with LIME JUICE is not half bad -- for Hellman's. :biggrin: (I always figure that the rest of the country always gets these new products before NYC does, so other people might know about them.)

2. Teasing you and Jin? Oh, no, never. I don't believe there's any shame in using a decent, consistent product for convenience. Now, if you had both said you used some no-name generic brand, then I might rag you a bit :raz::raz: But I've seen Hellman's in some very fine kitchens, so I would never fault you for using it.

3. for Bux: yes, there is a date on Hellman's, but it keeps way beyond then. That stuff is almost indestructable! Sometimes I wonder if it's even real food, it lasts so long in the fridge.

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3. for Bux: yes, there is a date on Hellman's, but it keeps way beyond then.  That stuff is almost indestructable!  Sometimes I wonder if it's even real food, it lasts so long in the fridge.

You probably say the same thing about a Twinkie. :biggrin:

Do they ever go stale? Of course some people raise the question of whether they are ever fresh.

Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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Do they ever go stale? Of course some people raise the question of whether they are ever fresh.

I'd bet there's fodder for a whole new "guilty pleasures" thread here.

Some things are better stale. I love graham crackers when they get a little soft and crumbly. And there are scads of people who swear Marshmallow Peeps aren't worth anything until they've gone crusty. Not that anyone on eGullet indulges in Peeps. Too :cool: ...

Dave Scantland
Executive director
dscantland@eGstaff.org
eG Ethics signatory

Eat more chicken skin.

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3. for Bux: yes, there is a date on Hellman's, but it keeps way beyond then.  That stuff is almost indestructable!  Sometimes I wonder if it's even real food, it lasts so long in the fridge.

You probably say the same thing about a Twinkie. :biggrin:

Do they ever go stale? Of course some people raise the question of whether they are ever fresh.

I feel the same way about bottled Mayo and Lemon Curd.

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I've seen Hellman's in a squeeze bottles but it's plain.

Kewpie (by the QP Corporation is the first and best mayonnaise made in Japan). It's, um, what the Iron Chefs use. :laugh:

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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Here's the e-mail reply I got from Hellman's. It looks like a few different form answers slapped together:

+++

Hi Steven,

Thank you for writing!

Here is the information that you requested:

Concern about the safety of eggs used in the manufacturer of mayonnaise is

unnecessary for the following reasons:

1. Eggs are pasteurized.

2. Egg suppliers for Hellmann's and Best Foods products must certify that they

are operating under a continuous program to ensure that the eggs are free of

Salmonella. Each refrigerated delivery of pasteurized liquid eggs to the plant

is tested before it is accepted and held at 40oF or less until they are used to

make mayonnaise.

3. If raw, unpasteurized eggs were used to make mayonnaise, there would be no

risk of food borne illness because the acidity and the salt in the mayonnaise

would destroy Salmonella. Commercial mayonnaise is, in effect,

self-pasteurizing.

"Best When Purchased By" is the date product should be purchased by for best

quality, and allows for a reasonable period of storage and usage (2 to 3

months) beyond that date.

We have the Best Before Date for a number of reasons:

1) To ensure that your favorite mayonnaise will be at its optimum flavor

2) Whether unopened or opened, it is best to buy only in quantity that can be

used in a reasonable time and preferably before the Best Before Date.

3) Unopened, commercial mayonnaise is microbiologically safe to eat for a long

period of time, however it will not be at its best optimum flavor.

4) An opened jar of mayonnaise stored for an extended period, will be affected

and the delicate flavor notes of Hellmann's/Bestfoods will begin to wane.

5) The date on every jar allows for a reasonable amount of storage and

guarantees great flavor.

STORAGE

May be stored on shelf before opening, refrigerate after opening; Do NOT

freeze. Storage conditions (temperature) affect product quality. High

temperatures will accelerate loss of fresh flavor; exposure to cold (near

freezing temperatures) can change the consistency, texture, and thickness. May

cause separation and therefore is not recommended. For best dispensing store

squeeze bottles upside down.

Mayonnaise can be stored on the shelf before opening. However, once opened

refrigeration is recommended. For your information, we included a quote from

"The Association for Dressings and Sauces" pamphlet Mayonnaise: The

Misunderstood Dressing:

..."from a food safety standpoint, commercial mayonnaise (meaning not-homemade)

and mayonnaise-type dressings are perfectly stable when stored at room

temperature after opening. Quality, not safety, is the only reason the labels

on our products suggest that they be refrigerated after opening. Refrigeration

ensures that the commercial mayonnaise keeps its fresh flavor for a longer

period of time."

For additional information, on this issue, tips on mayonnaise safety and links

to government agencies food safety information, please visit the website

www.dressings-sauces.org .

Thanks for your interest!

Your friends at Hellmann's

+++

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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before.

Sad that they would have no desire to share anything more concrete with the person making the query.

I am even more apprehensive about using their stuff after that response.

Especially that part where they brag about their product suitable to be kept at room temperature. What are the putting in it that makes them so confident? That is what I want to know.

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I certainly agree with that.

Although I have on occasion resorted to a big jar of Hellman's when making vast quantities of potato salad.

I have had to resort to Hellman's once when catering for a group of 225. Embarassed as I was to do that, I felt it was the best I could do.

So, here... I have come clean. :shock:

Here's an anecdote that might make you feel better (it made me smile when I heard it):

There was a recent lecture and tasting event given by two local celebrities, one an older and revered food/cookbook writer, the other a restaurant chef. The people who were making the food for the tasting made a big batch of mayonaisse for one the dishes. The older person came by, tasted the mayo and told them it was horrible, it wasn't real mayo. Of course, the cooks were mortified. They tasted it among themselves trying to figure out what they had done wrong. Service was approaching and worse, they had screwed up in front of someone they all love and respect. The chef came by and saw them huddled around the mayo and laughed "oh, just go get some Best Foods, that's what she likes." The writer was completely unapologetic too, "I like what I like."

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So we have a pact, right? Instead of using Hellman's as our backup mayo, we're all switching to Miracle Whip.

What is the ingredient that accounts for Miracle Whip's distinctive taste?

I can't stand it. I remember going to someone's house once and being asked if I wanted mayo on my sandwich. I said yes, only to find it slathered with Miracle Whip. It was painful.

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