Cranks in Guildford. I think I have a clear memory of how it tasted, and brown pottery plates, but seeing as it was thirty-five plus years ago I think it is safe to say that my memories may be inaccurate. At least in part because I remember the mayonnaise tasting very much like Heinz salad cream, and I don't honestly see how that is possible if it was home made.
Elizabeth David writes in French Provincial Cooking "It may seem superfluous to give a recipe for so basic a dish as egg mayonnaise, but sometimes, in the search for originality, the most obvious dishes are forgotten. No one ever need be ashamed to offer their guests a well-made dish of egg mayonnaise, for it is always appreciated". I don't know if it was the search for originality or the lingering fear of cholesterol - the dietary bogeyman of my teenage years - but I certainly haven't made, eaten or even thought about egg mayonnaise in a very long time. But old-fashioned French-style brasseries are having a bit of a moment in London and places like Brasserie Zedel are putting it back on the menu.
One day last week it seemed like a very good idea. I had a nice chunk of olive sourdough bread that was really calling out for something gentle and soothing to eat with it. Home made mayonnaise is the easiest thing in the world but I had some good-quality bought mayo so I didn't bother. I also couldn't quite bring myself to present it in the Mrs David-approved fashion, smearing mayonnaise thickly across the plate and topping it with halved eggs and parsley sprinkles. I put my eggs on a bed of lettuce, dolloped a little mayonnaise on top and revelled in nostalgia.