Move over, pickle soft serve, an artisanal ice cream maker based in Falkirk, Scotland, ICE Falkirk, has come up with a new flavor of ice cream that’s not only broken the internet, it’s breaking up friendships, dividing families, and causing foodies the world over to stop what they’re doing and consider the question: Is mayonnaise ice cream is an edible abomination or an actual gastronimical miracle? But first, let’s address the underlying question, shall we?
Why is mayonnaise ice cream a thing
— 💚 KATIE | 14 (@SmartysCringe) July 26, 2018
Well, @SmartysCringe certainly hit the nail on the head. Why even make mayonnaise ice cream? The answer starts to become clear when you consider the two key ingredients in mayonnaise: oil and egg yolk (you can also add an acid for tang, such as vinegar or lemon juice, as this recipe for homemade mayo does).
Now consider the two key ingredients in ice cream: cream and sugar (and whatever flavoring you wish to add, such as vanilla, as in this recipe for homemade vanilla ice cream). Finally, consider that frozen custard, a creamier, richer, smoother version of ice cream, is made by incorporating egg yolks into the cream, sugar, and flavoring.
What we’re getting at is this: Mayonnaise ice cream is essentially frozen custard. Or, as this professionally trained cook puts it, it’s “just another emulsion”:
Okay, I’ve been thinking about this whole mayonnaise ice cream thing. So, it’s just another emulsion. What if, instead of Hellmann’s, you made your own mayo with ghee instead of oil? A little lemon juice as the acid? Then use that nutty-tasting goodness in your base? I’d try it.
— F Crouter (@F_Crouter) July 27, 2018
But what about the flavor?
So, perhaps you’re on board now with the notion of mayo ice cream as a super-smooth, super-rich version of ice cream, but you’re still wondering: What about the flavor? If you were to make mayonnaise ice cream at home, you could flavor it in any way you want, but it just so happens that ICE Falkirk uses Hellmann‘s brand mayonnaise in its concoction. Hellmann’s gets its underlying tang from both vinegar and lemon juice, as well as the slightest hint of paprika, plus an added lightness from egg whites.
But we’re not saying that like it’s a bad thing! Clever home cooks have long been adding commercial brand mayonnaise to sweet foods as a way of enriching their texture without you even realizing it. Take this Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake, for example, which incorporates an entire cup of mayonnaise! And mayonnaise is actually the secret ingredient to fluffier pancakes.
So, clearly, mayo is no stranger to sweets, and can even enhance them.
What are people actually saying about mayonnaise ice cream?
It’s a bit soon for a scientific study, but a quick survey of social media reveals that there are those who like mayonnaise ice cream, such as @crerrity:
I’m here with a controversial opinion, hello all: I want to try the mayonnaise ice cream and I’m actually here for it
— Charlotte Errity (@crerrity) July 27, 2018
And there are those who don’t like the idea of mayonnaise ice cream, like @ninalingt:
I found out someone made mayonnaise ice cream. All I got to say is just because we can doesn’t mean we should.
— Ginina Lingat (@ninalingt) July 26, 2018
Digging a bit deeper into social media, a pattern emerges: Most of the people who don’t like mayonnaise ice cream simply haven’t tried it yet. Maybe now they’ll want to give it a shot.