This recipe starts with an easy, thick vegan mayo- no fancy ingredients required- and then adds toasted sesame oil and tangy umeboshi to make an indescribably delicious spread, dressing, or dip. You can go ahead and use a store-bought vegan mayo as the base if you want, it will work just as well.
It’s been a busy week so tonight this is what I am going to dip my store-bought vegan chicken tenders in, but future-Jess is going to be drizzling this over avocado roll bowls this weekend. If you’ve never had umeboshi (ume) before, this is a good introduction to a fairly powerful ingredient. It’s made from preserved plums, and is a beautiful deep pink colour but no sweetness at all. It is incredibly salty and has a mellow tanginess that leaves a faintly floral, plumy aftertaste on the palate. You can get umeboshi whole, in a paste, or simply as ume vinegar. I recommend starting with the paste and going from there, as it is the easiest to use. It is a bit like miso, in that you need to smoosh it into a small amount of liquid to get it to dissolve properly in sauces- otherwise it will just stay as one big clump of ume.
The vegan mayo recipe I use is very basic, but it’s never failed me. From what I can tell based on reports from people I’ve shared this with, the main issue that arises is that it fails to thicken. I think that happens because of the type of milk used, especially if you substitute with almond or another non-soy milk. I use regular sweetened Alpro soy milk. If you try it with something else, let me know! I am curious to see how it turns out using different milks. If your milk fails you, you can thicken your mayo with 2-3 teaspoons of ground chia or flax. It will leave a little bit of texture but still taste delicious, and it’s better than wasting food!
Vegan Ume Sesame Mayo
- A blender or immersion blender. You can do this with a wire whisk and a metal bowl but I'm not gonna lie, it's pretty tough!
For the Easy Vegan Mayo
- 1/2 cup soy milk be advised, substitutes may not work!
- 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup neutral-flavoured oil, such as sunflower or canola don't use extra flavourful oils here, they can easily become overpowering
For the Vegan Ume-Sesame Mayo variation
- 2 teaspoons umeboshi paste
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil feel free to omit this if you want a light and tangy ume mayo without the depth and complexity of the toasted sesame
- 1/2 cup prepared vegan mayo store-bought is fine, I like Follow Your Heart's Vegenaise best
For the Easy Vegan Mayo
- Add the soy milk, dijon, vinegar, and salt to your blender, leaving it to curdle for about 3 minutes
- Blend your mixture for about 5 seconds. It should look liquidy and inconsistent, as shown
- With the blender running, pour in the cup of oil in a steady stream until it is all added and the mixture is substantially thickened, about 1 minute total. If you can't pour while blending with your blender, splash in the oil a quarter cup at a time, blending for about 5-10 seconds between each addition
- The finished mayo can be transferred into any clean, reusable jar. I store mine in jam jars! It should be thick enough to pile up and stand on its own on a spoon, as shown.
For the Vegan Ume-Sesame Mayo Variation
- Smoosh the ume, soy sauce and tamari together in a bowl, pressing the mixture up against the sides of the bowl to smooth out any ume clumps
- Stir in the mayo until it is well-incorporated. If your mixture isn't coming together very well, go ahead and blend it in a small blender cup for a minute or so.