I’m talking about the old adage to “Keep It Simple, Stupid!” (Some delicate souls refer to it as “Keep It Simple, Silly.” *LOL*)
It has been h-o-t here, and when it comes to food, I’ve been keeping things pretty simple for the most part. I’ve not been shy about using convenience products, such as pre-seasoned, lean pork tenderloin that we bake out on the grill…pasta salad mix that I just boil and toss as per the directions, ‘though I do like to try to add in a fresh ingredient or two…marinade mix…tossed green salads with bits and bobs of whatever I have handy to add in and that sounds yummy…fresh vegetables seasoned simply with a bit of olive oil, healthy splashes of red wine or balsamic vinegar, some ground sea salt and coarse ground black pepper, and maybe some snippets of fresh basil.
What can I say — it’s summertime! (Go on, take 2 1/2 minutes out of your day and give this beautiful Sam Cooke rendition — with some mis-spelled lyrics 😉 — a listen. You know you want to!)
Like most things,egg salad can be very, very basic — simply diced egg and mayonnaise or salad dressing with a squirt of mustard — or have a bit more too it, yet still be simple. I prefer to add in a bit more than just mayo and mustard because I want the nutrition, texture, and flavors that come from the veggies added in.
The key ingredient for egg salad is, of course, hard boiled eggs! 😉 Believe it or not, there are actually several variations on how to hard boil eggs. Here’s how I do it:
- Place desired number of eggs in a single layer in a sauce pan. Sauce pan should be large enough that there is space among the eggs — they shouldn’t be crowded right next to each other.
- Fill with cold water from the tap until eggs are fully covered by 1/2″ to 1″ of water.
- Sprinkle a bit of salt or a splash of vinegar into the water.
- Bring to a boil, uncovered, over medium-high to high heat.
- When the pan reaches a boil, remove from heat and cover. Let rest for 18 minutes (set a timer!).
- Pour out hot water and rinse in cold water (it may take a few rinses, leaving eggs in the water). Lightly crack the eggs while submerged in water. (I’ve found that this generally helps the eggs to peel more easily.)
- Peel eggs when cool enough to handle.
When making egg salad, I generally allow 1 egg per sandwich. The salad will keep for a few days in the refrigerator. If you like, you can dress your sandwich with some lettuce, sliced tomato, some sliced cucumber — whatever floats your boat and that you have a hankering for. 😉
Missie’s Egg Salad (I don’t have any real measurements — I do it all by taste and preference in relation to how many eggs I’m working with and how many folks I’m feeding)
- Hard boiled egg(s), peeled and coarsely chopped (allow 1 egg per sandwich)
- Some diced onion (I had some red onion already diced that I used, but yellow or white works well, too — you might even prefer to use some green onion)
- Dollop (usually 1 to 3) of reduced-fat (lite) salad dressing (such as Miracle Whip) or reduced-fat (lite) mayonnaise — (seriously, start off easy on the salad dressing or mayo and add in more as you need to; it really doesn’t take all that much)
- Healthy squirt or two of yellow mustard (I really prefer the yellow mustard for this, but if you’d rather, use dijon or whatever floats your boat)
- 1 to 3 healthy spoonfuls of dill and/or sweet relish
- Chopped dill (my preference) and/or sweet pickles to taste (I LOVE pickles, and adding chopped pickle adds a layer of crunch and flavor that the relish lacks)
- 1 or 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced (obviously more or less, depending upon the amount of salad you’re making)
- Sprinkling of seasoned salt and coarse ground black pepper (I LOVE coarse ground black pepper) to taste
- Optional: Shredded cheese to taste
- Optional: Sprinkling of dill weed to taste
- Optional: Sprinkling of paprika
- Place chopped egg(s) into a medium-sized bowl. Add in a dollop of mayo or salad dressing, squirt of mustard, and everything else. (Seriously, go easy with the mayo or salad dressing — you can always add in more, if need be.)
- Stir/toss together gently with a fork. Give it a wee taste; add in more salad dressing/mayo, mustard, pickle, relish, etc. as needed. Just keep doing this until you have the desired flavor and consistency.
- Refrigerate leftovers.
TIP 1: If you want to pack it for a lunch or pack it for a picnic, you can pack the egg salad and bread separately and assemble the sandwiches as you eat them; OR, you can lightly, and I do mean lightly, spread the insides of the sandwich bread (the sides that will be facing the filling) with butter or margarine (honestly, it takes very little), then assemble the sandwiches — the butter or margarine will help keep the bread from getting soggy.
TIP 2: If you want to pack the egg salad (as a salad or sandwiches) for lunch but don’t have access to refrigeration, fill a water-proof plastic bag (such as a Ziploc) with ice and place your wrapped sandwich or sandwich filling on top of that to keep it chilled. A frozen juice box will keep things cool, too.
Remember — if you KISS, it gives you more time to Rock and Roll All Night and Party Every Day! 😉 Go on — you know you’re wanting to give it a listen. ’tis the weekend, after all! 😉 And if you’re in North America, we in the States are celebrating 4th of July this weekend, and our Canadian mates to the north are celebrating Canada Day, as well!