Macaroni Salad from a Bucket isn’t Attractive

The idea of Macaroni Salad in general isn’t attractive.
 I know this.

It’s made up of mayo and pasta. In my mind I know I should say no thank you, but when made correctly, macaroni salad is the perfect partner for a hot dog.  I am aware of the no factor of a hot dog as well, but nothing beats them when they’re burnt and slightly crispy. I’m really racking up healthy points in this post.

Back to the attractiveness of macaroni salad.

You know when you go to a BBQ and the person responsible for the salad irresponsibly pulls out a bucket or one of those milk cartons full of a sugary mayonnaise based potato or macaroni salad? Not attractive. No matter how good looking the person is they just lost hot points for bringing the bucket of mayo soup, with bits of dehydrated red pepper and macaroni. Homemade macaroni or potato salad though, that’s pretty attractive, and insanely easy to make.

For me there are some must haves when it comes to macaroni salad:

black olives
celery and
hard boiled eggs

These things are necessary. Trust me. I’m a specialist.

just kidding

But seriously, this is some good macaroni salad.

What’s that? you don’t like macaroni salad, and you’d prefer potato? Well then, head over here.

This macaroni salad is easy and a little on the lighter side with a mostly sour cream base. I used light sour cream, and olive oil mayo, and it tastes fresh and zesty, thanks to a secret ingredient.

And this all comes at the perfect time for 4th of July. This weekend everybody. You’re Welcome. I’m not a huge fan of the fourth. or fireworks. I need to see some fierce in your face fireworks. As I’ve mentioned several times, I live in Humboldt county so most likely the fireworks will just end up being color changing fog with sound effects. For some reason the city sees it necessary to spend the $15,000 on it every year. It’s all donations, but still that 15 grand could go towards so much more than a 15 min display of glowing fog.

I haven’t always lived in Humboldt. I used to live in the “foothills of Yosemite”, down by Fresno and every year we’d go see a Grizzlies game and watch fireworks afterward. What’s more American than that? Overpriced hot dogs, Baseball, and a pretty schnazzy fireworks display that used the same soundtrack every year. I actually kind of miss it. Minus the heat.

Back to the fourth and these salads. Make one of them, or both… to take to your freedom shindig, and you’ll be pretty popular. They both make a ton of salad, and should be made the day before to get the best flavor. If they seem a little dry when you go to serve them, then add a little more mayo or make a little extra dressing.

When it comes to both of the salads hard boiled eggs are in order. To cook em perfectly cover the eggs in a small saucepan with cold water by an inch and bring to full rolling, intense boil. Remove from the heat, cover and let them sit for 20 min.

When it comes to cooking the pasta cool it completely with cold running water, this is one of the only times you should run water over pasta, and then let it drain for 5 or 10 min in the colander to make sure you dont have a watery salad. If the pasta’s warm when it goes in it’ll absorb all the dressing and you’ll just have to add more, and then you’re left with mayo logged pasta. no bueno.

Also, besides the absolute necessities for the macaroni salad, any of the other veggies can be improvised. I used an ear of sweet corn and it was amazing, so much better than relish. you could also add some raw zucchini or broccoli or spicy radishes might also be a nice addition.

Go out right now and buy the ingredients for this salad along with some hot pants or shorts, depending how you roll in the summer, and be extra attractive at the BBQ.

And I would like everyone to know the color scheme for the 2 dishes was not planned, believe me, I’m not that cheesy.

just in case you missed the link earlier, POTATO SALAD!

Want macaroni salad?

Macaroni Salad
Makes a Megatron sized bowl

1 lb elbow macaroni
4 eggs, hard-boiled
1 ear sweet corn, kernels removed*
1 red bell pepper chopped finely, not necessarily diced.
3 stalks celery, chopped finely
1/2 of a 14 oz can black olives, chopped finely
2 green onions, sliced thinly

1/2 c sour cream
1/3 c mayo
3 T pepperoncini juice or pickle juice, but you really should get some pepperoncinis
around 1 t of yellow mustard
1 t salt
1/2 t pepper
optional – a few dashes of hot sauce

Cook the pasta, according to the time on the box. I always use the smaller time on the box and set a timer when I throw the pasta in to the water. When you put the water on to boil, start cooking the eggs by placing them in a small saucepan and covering them by an inch with cold water. Bring the water to a full rolling boil, then remove from the heat, cover and let sit for 20 min.

While the eggs and pasta are doing their thing, prepare the veggies. Make the dressing by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl.

When the pasta is cooked drain it in a colander and run cold water over it to stop the cooking and cool it down so it doesn’t get mayo logged.

When the eggs are done run them under cold water or put them in an ice bath. This not only cools them down but helps with the peeling process by making the shell easier to separate from the egg itself.

Chop the eggs roughly and combine all the ingredients in a bowl, taste to season further, cover and store in the fridge. If the salad is too dry, make some more dressing and add it right before you serve it.

This whole thing is way better if made at least 1 day ahead.

*when removing corn from the cob, husk the corn and break off remaining part of the stem, place this flat part where the stem was in the bowl and cut the kernels off the cob with a decent sized knife, this will insure that you wont have kernels flying everywhere.

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