The Perfect Macaroni Salad

I have issues with prepared salads.   Until recently, I could not come up with the perfect chicken salad.   Thanks to Granny, I now have one.

I had the same problem with macaroni salad—I could not find one or create one that lived up to my expectations.      Finally, I decided to read through some of my cookbooks.   I grabbed a few favorites (from my stash of many), made a cup of tea, and sat down to relax.

I found gold!    My favorite cookbooks tend to be any Junior League or Service League cookbooks.   They are always fabulous!    I grabbed my vintage (circa 1978) Cook’s Collage by the Junior League of Tulsa and I found the perfect macaroni salad.

The photo may not be perfect, but the flavors are spot on!

The Perfect Macaroni Salad
Based on Olive Macaroni Salad from Cook’s Collage
Recipe attributed to Mrs. Lorton

1 (10 oz.) pkg.  macaroni (your favorite)
2 T. ketchup
1/2 c. mayonnaise
1/2 c. light olive oil
2 T. red wine vinegar
1/2 t. sea salt
1/4 t. fresh ground pepper
1/4  c. dried tomatoes, chopped
2 t. capers, drained and rinsed
2 T. Vidalia onion, finely chopped
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

Cook macaroni according to package directions.    Drain and rinse.   Place in a large serving bowl.

In a blender, combine  ketchup, mayo, olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.   Blend until incorporated.    Pour dressing over macaroni.   Mix in tomatoes, capers, onion, bacon, and eggs and toss to combine.   Cover and chill until ready to serve.

The original recipe calls for a can of ripe pitted olives.   I am neither a huge fan nor did I have any on hand.   Add them if you like.     Fresh tomatoes were also called for.    I immediately ate the four tomatoes we have harvested, so I opted for dried.

I did garnish with some fresh basil and I actually may add some to the next batch I make.   See, there I go again—trying to mess with perfection.

I hope you try this for you upcoming holiday cookouts, barbeques and get-togethers.



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