Happy Monday everyone! Here’s another classic to add to your summer barbecue recipe collection – a delicious Macaroni Salad!
I know that this is a completely biased opinion, but I think my husband Jack’s macaroni salad is one of the best that I’ve eaten! It’s rich and creamy thanks to a dressing made with both mayonnaise and crème Fraiche (you can substitute sour cream for the crème Fraiche if you can’t find it) as well as a small amount of cream cheese, and all that creaminess turns this summertime classic into pure comfort food!
But – it doesn’t stop there! This macaroni salad has great bright and zesty flavors that lighten the creaminess, thanks to the addition of champagne vinegar, capers, scallions, roasted red peppers – and Jack’s secret ingredient – sweet pepper relish! We’re not talking about the relish you’d put on a hot dog – look for a flavorful sweet pepper relish (such as Howard’s or Uncle Maynard’s brands) at your grocery store.
This macaroni salad is made in a way that is similar to our popular Jack’s Potato Salad recipe where we add the dressing while the cooked pasta is still warm. As it cools, the pasta absorbs some of the dressing so it’s super flavorful – and sure to be a hit at your next summer party!
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 ½ cups mayonnaise
- 1 cup Crème Fraiche (sour cream may be substituted)
- 2 tablespoons softened cream cheese
- ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon celery salt
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
- 1 tablespoon capers, drained
- ½ cup frozen peas
- ¼ cup minced celery
- ¼ cup chopped scallions
- ½ cup drained and chopped roasted red peppers
- 4 tablespoons sweet pepper relish (such as Howard's or Uncle Maynard's brand)
- ½ cup sliced black olives
- ½ cup chopped yellow or orange bell peppers
- 12 ounces uncooked pasta (we like the spiral Cavatappi or Cavatelli noodles)
- In a small sauce pan fill with enough water to cover three eggs. Bring to a boil, add white vinegar and then with a slotted spoon, gently drop the eggs in one at a time. Boil for five minutes and turn burner off, then let them sit in the hot water for another fifteen minutes. Drain, shake to crack shells and peel under running water. Chop and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix mayonnaise, Crème Fraiche and softened creamed cheese until smooth. Add all other ingredients except pasta. Fold in chopped eggs and hold mixture under refrigeration.
- Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain thoroughly but do not rinse or cool.
- In a large bowl, place drained hot pasta. Add mayonnaise mixture to hot noodles and stir to combine.
- Spread the pasta salad onto a sheet pan and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two hours.
- Spoon the now cooled pasta salad into a serving bowl and serve.
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