Japanese ingredients for your healthy life

The history of Japanese mayonnaise

Early times

Mayonnaise, often abbreviated and referred to as emayof does have an exact confirmed source of where it first began. Many sources agree that the origin was Western Europe in around 1642 where it was made to be some kind of aioli made by French Duke, de Richelieufs chef. However, other sources place the origin of mayonnaise being from the town of Mao (Menorca, Spain) from where it was then taken to France and was from there referred to as Mayonnaise, keeping the original name but with the French twist.

 

Although the history of when Japanese Mayonnaise was exactly invented is not documented, there is speculation it was some time around when Kewpie Mayonnaise was introduced to Japan, this was in 1925. First of allc we will start off with what Japanese Mayonnaise actually is:

 

Japanese mayonnaise can be made with the ingredients of oil, egg yolk, MSG and spices. Mayonnaise is made by slowly adding the oil to the egg yolk whilst whisking vigorously to spread the oil evenly throughout the mixture. Unlike traditional American Mayonnaise, Japanese Mayonnaise eliminates the water based ingredients from it; this exemption gives Japanese Mayonnaise a much thinner texture than American Mayonnaise. Japanese Mayonnaise also includes either Apple or Rice Malt Vinegar, when adding vinegar directly to the yolk it emulsifies more water, thus making more mayonnaise. Japanese Mayonnaise also contains the popular Asian addition of MSG.

Evolution of the product and ingredients

Now we have covered what Japanese actually is, you are probably wondering ? well what is this magic Kewpie mayonnaise everyone is talking about? Kewpie Mayonnaise is without doubt the most famous Japanese mayonnaise. It is sold in a squeeze bottle with a baby on the front and encased in a plastic outer wrapper which is discarded after purchase. This brand of mayo is very popular in major retailers and grocery stores. The squeeze bottle sports a star shaped nozzle so it is beautifully dispensed in a lovely rosette shape when squeeze onto a plate. The Kewpie brand can be described as satisfyingly rich and slightly sweet, it does contain ingredients such as MSG, which explains why it tastes so good and will get great reviews from anyone who has tried it. Kewpie will set you back about $9 USD which could seem a bit extortionate compared to regular mayo, but think of it as an investment, you can sneak Kewpie into just about anything as ingredients to boost in some amazing flavours in your cooking.

 

Since its introduction in 1925 Kewpie mayo has been a predominant household condiment. The popularity of this mayo canft be overestimated, with some Japanese people referring to their friends as gMayorah if they really canft get enough of the rich yellow coloured good stuff! Kewpie is nowadays the second most popular sauce/condiment used in Japan, the most popular being Soy Sauce.

 

Japanese mayonnaise can be made with the ingredients of oil, egg yolk, MSG and spices. Mayonnaise is made by slowly adding the oil to the egg yolk whilst whisking vigorously to spread the oil evenly throughout the mixture. Unlike traditional American Mayonnaise, Japanese Mayonnaise eliminates the water based ingredients from it; this exemption gives Japanese Mayonnaise a much thinner texture than American Mayonnaise. Japanese Mayonnaise also includes either Apple or Rice Malt Vinegar, when adding vinegar directly to the yolk it emulsifies more water, thus making more mayonnaise.

How things have changed

Japanese Mayonnaise today is more commonly used than it was when it was first invented. When Japanese Mayonnaise came about, although the ingredients were identical the condiment was not used as daringly as it is in more recent times. Today it is believed around 80 percent of Japanese dishes include the addition of Kewpie (or homemade Japanese Mayonnaise) to make food infused with flavour, sometimes you arenft even able to determine the ingredients used in a dish just according to flavour as the overpowering taste sensation of the mayonnaise can really set off your tastebuds. The tastebud sensation you experience is of course enhanced by the fact that Japanese Mayonnaise/Kewpie contains added MSG. MSG has been on the ingredients list of this mayonnaise since it was first invented.

 

To help you understand the MSG component here is a quick explanation of why MSG can be a concern to some people. MSG is the sodium salt of glutamic acid, one of the most abundant naturally occurring non-essential amino acids. It has been classified by the U.S Food and Drug Administration as generally recognised as safe. MSG is used to improve the overall taste of certain foods, adding MSG means lowering the salt that is put into certain foods, as we all know excessive salt is a bad thing that can lead to instant side effects or on very rare occurrences complications later in life. MSG is safe when eaten at customary levels, but you have to keep a watchful eye over it as studies have shown that excess consumption can lead to headaches, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, nausea and vomiting. Some tend to avoid MSG rich foods because they are sensitive to the additive, others donft see any side effects. Monitored and ingested in small doses MSG is categorised as perfectly safe.

 

We got a little off track therec what we were saying was that in todayfs day and age Japanese mayonnaise is used in almost everything, to give you some examples of how it is used, here are some of the things it is commonly used in in Japan:

 

You can use it in sushi as it goes well with rice, itfs ideal when mixed with tinned tuna. Another style is to use it as a dipping sauce with Japanese meals. It goes well with salads and sandwiches. I recommend it with devilled eggs and any kind of egg salad as well as corn on the cob. It goes well on any handburgers and it is a classic when eaten with Japanese okonomiyaki too.

 

In Japan you can also find mayo flavoured ice cream, mayo flavoured snacks and potato chips. It can also be used as a spaghetti sauce and a topping for toast and noodles. So, itfs safe to say that even though a definitive date of its invention (which would have been the day someone decided to use a few different ingredients and tweak the original recipe of Mayonnaise) is inconclusive, since 1925 when Kewpie was invented that it has taken over Japan, people are going crazy for it now.