I have leftover ham this week and the challenge is to reinvent it in delicious ways. This ham salad is one of my favorites. I am the only person in my family who still enjoys the “salad” sandwich, and I love them all: egg, chicken, turkey, tuna, salmon, and ham, of course. As a child I walked to school and came home for lunch everyday. Most days we ate sandwiches, sometimes macaroni and cheese or Chef Boyardee pasta for a change of pace. Usually there was soup to accompany the sandwiches, and a little something sweet to carry along for the walk back to school. So these kinds of sandwiches are my fall-back comfort food. But these days a mayo-based sandwich filling is a special treat, consumed infrequently, and not without some thought to my cholesterol levels. However, I believe in all things in moderation, so here’s how I make ham salad along with a couple of ways to enjoy it.
(makes about 1 1/2 cups)
8 ounces carefully-trimmed, coarsely chopped ham
1 scallion, white and green top, coarsely chopped
2 to 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 to 3 tablespoons dill pickle relish
freshly ground pepper
Place the chopped ham and scallion in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse to chop. The mixture should have some texture, you don’t want a puree. Remove to a mixing bowl and add the mayonnaise and pickle relish, starting with 2 tablespoons of each. Mix gently and adjust with additional mayo and relish to your taste. If you like you can add a little Dijon mustard to the mixture, or use sweet relish instead of the dill relish. Adjust the seasoning with pepper and salt , if required. Serve the ham salad as a spread, with crackers or toasted baguette, or use as a sandwich spread. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.