Mayonnaise is an oil-in-water emulsion. In the process of making mayonnaise, the oil phase breaks up into droplets ranging in size from 2 to 10 microns, most of which are between 3 and 4 microns. Energy breaks up the oil phase into droplets. This is possible by mixing with much shear. If you didn’t use a lot of shear force, the oil droplets would come back together after a while. The tiny droplets of oil and water spread out finely are called emulsions.
The surface must have an emulsifier coat to maintain a stable emulsion. The emulsifier is a chemical component that contains both an oily and a watery section. The oily portion of the molecule will enter the oil droplet, while the watery part goes into the surrounding aqueous system. As a result, the emulsion becomes stable and gets the ideal thickness. The emulsifier in traditional mayonnaise is mostly lecithin from egg yolk.
What are whole, medium, and low-fat mayonnaise?
In the process of making mayonnaise, the amount of egg yolk in full-fat mayonnaise is between 8% and 10%. Classic mayonnaise has 79–80% oil, vinegar, sugar, salt, and mustard. It doesn’t have any binding agents. Full-fat mayonnaise relies on the strength of the emulsion because it doesn’t have any other binding agents. Because of this, the egg yolk is an essential part of this kind of mayo.
Starch or gums hold the water phase together in a medium to low-fat mayonnaise. The oil is too low to make a stable and thick emulsion. But by making the water phase thicker, viscosity and stability are possible. The size and shape of the droplets still matter, but not as much as they do in full-fat mayonnaise. In low-fat recipes, starch, and eventually starch and gum, can take the place of lecithin made from egg yolks.
A vegan product is one whose ingredients are all from plants. Basically, eggs, meat, and dairies are off-limits. This makes a difference in the process of making mayonnaise. Guess it depends on the recipe; egg yolk makes up between 2% and 10% of the whole recipe. This is true when using liquid egg yolk but not powder.
To make vegan mayonnaise, you need a plant-based lecithin source to take the egg yolk’s place in the recipe. There are other ways to get lecithin, like sunflower lecithin, but soy is a popular and good choice. Egg yolk is used in mayonnaise for a number of reasons, and a plant-based source of lecithin is not enough to cover them all. The egg yolk gives mayonnaise its yellow color and rich taste. But this is easy to do by using flavors and colors made from plants.
In general, making vegan mayonnaise is the same as making mayonnaise with egg yolks. In both batch and continuous emulsifying systems, the steps for processing can be the same. But lecithin made from soy is probably not as good as lecithin made from egg yolks. So, the other factors affecting the process can be essential and should be optimized. By pre-cooling, the oil and water phases can have the proper temperatures when they go into the emulsifier. Mixing the ingredients before putting them in the emulsifier area is another way to make emulsifying work better. The emulsifier itself is, of course, an essential factor. Shear force, retention time, and changes in retention time are also critical things to consider.
With US FDA regulations, mayonnaise must have vinegar, eggs, or egg yolks of at least 65% oil by weight. Except for turmeric and saffron, spices, and other natural flavors. Because they give a golden color to the mayonnaise, making it appear that it has egg yolks.
Spices, 30% vegetable oil, vinegar or lemon juice, and 4% egg yolk are the typical ingredients for salad dressing. The most common type of oil used to make mayonnaise is soybean oil. Vinegar is made from alcohol that has been distilled. Water is added to lemon or lime juice to thin it out.
Eggs go through pasteurization, heated to a specific temperature but not cooked. The eggs are pasteurized by heating them without actually frying them. Egg whites make low-fat variants. Modified food starches replace the fat from the absent egg yolk, ensuring that the low-fat mayonnaise keeps the creaminess and thickness of true mayonnaise. Gums, corn, or seaweed make food starches.
Then season it with salt to make it taste better. This amounts to around 1/16 of a teaspoon of salt per tablespoon of mayonnaise. Additional calcium disodium EDTA and other preservatives to extend the product’s storage life.
A constant blending process in a mayonnaise making machine keeps the right emulsification level. Basically, an emulsion is called a colloid. It is when two liquids, like vinegar and oil, are mixed, and one liquid forms small droplets spread over.
A chain of positive replacement pumps circulates the vinegar-and-oil mixture continually. Rotating impellers are installed in one or more chambers of these pumps. The cavities are filled and emptied with a steady pumping motion. While impellers transfer the mixed fluid from one section to another.
Adding of Ingredients
Now, the pre-measured ingredients are pumped in by spigots above or holes in the side of the pumps.
Through the pumping system, the mayonnaise is transported to the bottling section of the mayonnaise filling machine. Jars that have been pre-sterilized are moved along conveyor belts as mayonnaise is measured and put into them. Metal screwcaps are then used to seal the jars.
Continuous Mayonnaise Mixing System Diagram
Note: When the raw materials get to the processing plant, they are checked to see if they are in good condition. In-materials are also tested from time to time. Small amounts of the mayonnaise are taken out and tasted during the making process.
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