Classic Egg Salad

The quest to empty the pantry and refrigerator continues! I realized that I had a mostly full bottle of light mayonnaise hanging out in the refrigerator that was set to expire later this month. I’ve been craving egg salad lately (it’s one of those things people either love or hate, I think), so I thought that would be a perfect way to burn through some mayo. The last few times I’ve made egg salad I’ve used a “southern” recipe that calls for shallots and sweet pickle relish, but this time, I had my eye on the Classic Egg Salad recipe from the March/April 2003 issue of Everyday Food.

The recipe calls for 8 hard-cooked eggs, but it doesn’t specify *how* to hard-cook them. I decided to try Ina Garten’s way, which meant placing the eggs in a saucepan, covering them with 1 inch of water, bringing them to a boil, turning off the heat, leaving the pan on the burner (heat off) for 5 minutes, and then allowing the eggs to cool at room temperature. It took the eggs forever (about 45 minutes, actually) to cool, but the results were good (cooked yolks, no gray or green color issues).

My usual recipe calls for placing the eggs in a saucepan, covering them with 1 inch of water, bringing them to a boil, immediately removing them from the heat, covering them, and then letting them stand for 12 minutes. Then, I would rinse them under cold water to cool the eggs. This always worked just as well for me without the eternal cooling time.

Once I had my cooled hard-cooked eggs, I peeled them, placed them in a bowl, and coarsely chopped them with two knives. I added 1/2 cup of reduced-fat mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons of chopped celery, 2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard, and about 4 dashes of hot-pepper sauce. I seasoned to taste with salt and pepper and stirred everything together to combine.

I ended up serving this on whole-wheat bread, but it’s great on a bed of lettuce as well. I think I may actually like this recipe better than my usual one. It’s uncomplicated and delicious – “classic” in every sense of the word. I would definitely make this one again.

TIPS: I thought the salad was terrific at room temperature right after I put it together, but feel free to chill it if you prefer cold salads. I refrigerated the leftovers and had another yummy sandwich for lunch the next day.

Recipe link: Classic Egg Salad

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