A good stiff mayonnaise made with olive oil is the ideal foil to cold lobster. For a sauce tartare to go with Grilled Pigs’ Trotters, leave out the extra virgin oil, and add instead a tablespoon each of chopped parsley, capers and gherkins, and a few pickled nasturtium seeds if you have them. To pickle nasturtium seeds, pick them while they are fairly dry, pop in a jar and cover with spiced vinegar. Store for two to three months before using.

If mayonnaises break or curdle, I usually manage to retrieve them by putting about a dessertspoon of cold water in a bowl and, little by little, whisking in the curdled mayonnaise. It is not normally necessary to add another egg yolk.


  • 4 egg yolks
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 600 ml/1 pint good quality olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


Beat the egg yolks with the lemon juice in a bowl. Gradually beat in the olive oils with a balloon whisk, a few drops at a time at first, increasing to a slow trickle as you continue. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Mayonnaise can also be made very quickly in a processor or blender. Make in two batches, using half the ingredients in each batch. Put the egg yolks, lemon juice and a little salt and pepper in a processor or blender. Set the motor running and dribble in the oil slowly. Taste and adjust seasonings.