28 Jul, 2010
A condiment conundrum
My good friend Jimmy Dalton sends us this handy guide to excess mayonnaise. Specifically, Hellmann’s mayonnaise: umpteen moons ago, Snackbox snubbed his nose at a fancy organic mayonnaise I picked up in some snooty Dalkey shop. He then proved a point by eating Hellmann’s straight from a jar, with his hands. In fairness, he was half right. The organic version genuinely didn’t cut the mustard; unless you’re making your own mayonnaise – and even then I’m dubious – it’s hard to beat this gigantic brand. In a similar vein, many top chefs serve the mushy peas straight from a tin: sometimes processed is perfect. Over to you Jimmy…
Last week while having dinner with Peter, Catriona and a few other friends in the deliciously excellent Swai, he mentioned receipt of an odd culinary consignment to Cheapeats HQ. Peter opened the door one morning to find several gallons (well near enough) of mayonnaise and tomato ketchup from Hellmann’s waiting for his perusal.
As much as I like mayonnaise and ketchup there is only so much you can do with them. We all know that mayonnaise goes great on sandwiches and that no plate of chips is complete without the accompanying ketchup. You also really don’t want to get me started on the deliciousness of the illegitimate lovechild of ketchup and mayonnaise, Marie Rose aka “pink” sauce. The more adventurous can branch out into making their own coleslaw or egg mayonnaise, but it would take an entire season of summer BBQ’s for us to get through this lot. What to do? So I did a bit of digging and found a few less known uses for these common condiments:
- Hair conditioner. Yup, hair conditioner. Simply massage into your scalp cover for several minutes and shampoo out, leaving hair soft and luxurious (so I’m told).
- Face mask: simply apply a thin layer to your face, leave for several minutes and massage gently and feel the exfoliation goodness. Just remember to wash it all off once you are done. It can also be used in cases of sunburn if no after sun is close at hand.
- Just got divorced? Ring still stuck on your finger? Just apply some mayonnaise to your finger and watch that ring slide off.
- Cleaning: mayonnaise can be used to clean piano keys and remove tar from you car (should the government ever get around to resurfacing the roads). It’s not just mayonnaise that can be used to clean; ketchup can be used to shine up your copper pots. Simply rub on copper with a bit of salt and watch those stains dissolve away.
- Fake blood for a Halloween costume. This one is pretty self explanatory I think.
- You can also shine up the leaves of house plants by rubbing on a bit of mayonnaise on the leaves, leaving for a few minutes and then clean off. Apparently it’s an old florist’s trick (the trick that is, not the florist), although I’m not quite sure why you would want to.
The more I looked on-line for things to do with mayonnaise and ketchup the more uses I found. I had to stop after discovering a video that I could not even begin to describe here – the world of the internet is a strange, strange place. As a responsible writer you would expect me to test out these hints and tips, but I’ve never claimed to be either responsible or a writer so try at your own peril! Obviously you can also use the mayonnaise and ketchup for culinary purposes too. A good friend of mine makes a delicious chocolate cake that involves a surprising amount of mayo.
Do you have any handy condiment based tips or recipes?