Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter Leftovers Ham Salad

That enormous ham is going to make you even happier when the leftovers are transformed into ham salad made extra light with cooked egg.  The classic ham salad made by my mother's good friend, Tish, inspred me to create this recipe. We especially loved the dill pickle flavor with the salty ham in her version and paid homage to it here.

Ham salad attends formal events and Spring tea parties on toast points garnished with olives, pickled jalepeños, cocktail onions, capers or dill pickle slices.  Or take it to the office as a sandwich spread that will bring joy to your midday break.   At home it makes a natural side, served on baguette slices, to pea soup made from the ham bone.

No matter how much or how little ham salad you'd like to make, the master recipe will guide you.  You are not seeing double; the recipe calls for two mustards, prepared Dijon mustard and dry mustard powder.  The mustard powder provides a little extra kick.  If you do not have any, add extra prepared Dijon mustard. 

Master Recipe for Ham Salad
Ingredients for every 8 ounces of ham (about 2/3 cup cubed ham):
1 egg-- hard boiled or leftover scrambled
8-10 dill pickles chips
1 tablespoon mayonaise
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
generous pinch of ground black pepper (about 8 grind rotations)


Method
  1. Roughly chop ham, cooked egg and pickles.  
  2. Place in a food processor with remaining ingredients. 
  3. Pulse 3-4 times and stop to check consistency. Use a small spatula or spoon to wipe down sides so that all the meat is evenly chopped, but not pureed.  
  4. Taste the mixture  and add more pickles or mustard to suit you taste. 
  5. Pulse a few more times until the mixture is uniform and finely minced. 
No food processor? Use a chef's knife and cutting board to mince the ingredients one by one.  Add to a bowl and mix in the the remaining ingredients.  Takes no time at all. 

Store in a covered container and use within 5 days.