Hey there BraiseyBabes,
Each year brings endings and new beginnings. It is such an exciting time and I love spending it setting my intentions and goals for the upcoming year. Slowly and surely, part by part, anyone can work towards accomplishing the steps towards your ideal life. That’s what I love about Chi’s Mac Salad. Individually, all the parts get a little extra care and attention. When combined, the alchemic reaction is one of pure flavor and magic. Using thick cut ham, Japanese mayo, and juiceless pineapple chunks make it even more special. A little control will take you a long way. What are your intentions for 2023? Hope you have an abundant New Year!
Thanks for joining me on this journey and remember,
It’s all BraiseyBaby
- 1 lb.. of elbow pasta
- 1/2 lb. of thick cut deli ham
- 1-2 tsp salt
- 5 rings of pineapple slices
- 3 stalks of celery
- 6 oz of Japanese mayonnaise
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
Heat one pot of water with 5 cups of water. Salt water to taste like the ocean. Cook pasta to as instructed and have it al-dente. Pour out hot water and drain, then set aside to let fully cool at room temperature. Making the salad while the pasta is hot will result in a runny salad.
Open the can of pineapples. Discard the juice (or save for another recipe) and slice pineapples into desired chunky pieces. Make sure to dry the pineapples with paper towels so they do not add extra juices to the salad.
Slice celery into small quarter inch pieces. Take your time here will allow or even sized and even slices.
Take the ham and make even slices in one direction. Turn the ham 90 degrees and slice in the other direction to make tiny bite sized pieces.
Add all the ingredients onto the cooled pasta then add in about 5 tablespoons of Japanese mayonnaise. Mix well to combine all the ingredients.
Taste here to see how to adjust to your liking. This is where salt and pepper make all the difference to adjust the tastes for you and your loved ones. Mix well after you have adjusted the flavor to your liking.
Serve immediately or place into fridge to allow the salad to cool and get even better. The fridge will preserve the crunchiness of the celery and make the pasta also cool.
Fun Fact: My sis got this recipe from one of her coworkers and tweaked it a bit to her liking. She is not a fan of too much celery that would detract from the heartiness of the pasta and mayonnaise.
The Lesson: Good things take time! The carefulness and specificity in which my sis perfectly cut each piece of celery ham, and pineapples translated into the aesthetics and overall sauce bearing possibilities in each morsel. Always remember to taste and season as you go along too!
Side Note: The customization possibilities for this pasta salad are endless. My sis stuck with pineapples and ham for the classic Hawaiian vibe that reminded her of the beloved Maui. I would imagine spam, bell peppers, or any other cured meats would be an incredible alternative in this salad, as well. Next time I recreate this, I will try subbing in some alternative seasonings such as garlic powder, onion powder, or even seasoned salt!
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