If you do a quick search for "secret sauce," what appears most often is the mystery goo squirted onto the Big Mac. Although the actual wording on the propaganda leaflets McDonald's heaves out of airplanes over occupied territory (winning hearts, minds, and food-poisoning lawsuits) is "special" sauce, the widespread misconception is that the sauce is a secret. (And that the Big Mac is a "hamburger.") The Web abounds with the sites of forensic chefs who claim to have unraveled the mystery of this sauce (the Fermat's Last Theorem of industrial cookery) and devised an impressive simulacrum right in their own home. Why someone would want to do this is less a culinary than a psychiatric question, but they do. (Despite what must be some impressive stomach cramps.) Taking on this challenge is like trying to synthesize a synthetic, to re-create not a dinosaur but Dino. There are some secrets that are not worth knowing. But I'm no scientist. Or big fat guy. With arteries clogged tighter than the 72 Street IRT platform at rush hour.
Here's an attempt from Aaron J. Davis who writes: "If you like Big Macs, it's probably because of that tasty 'secret' spread that is plopped onto both decks of the world's most popular double-decker hamburger." (In my experience, if you like Big Macs it's probably because you're 5 years old or from out of town, but I'm no food scientist.) Mr. Davis offers the results of his own research with understandable (if frightening) pride. "This is the closest 'special sauce' clone you'll find ... anywhere." His recipe:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons French dressing
4 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
1 tablespoon finely minced white onion
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
- Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Stir well.
- Place sauce in a covered container and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight, so that the flavors blend. Stir the sauce a couple of times as it chills.