Archive for ‘dining’

December 24, 2010

chicken macaroni salad

chicken macaroni salad: an appetizer and dessert in one

A holiday staple and one of my favorites, this rich yet simple dish is confusingly both appetizer and dessert.

The fact that it’s a salad means that you can eat it pre-entrée, but it’s also a good way to finish the evening.

You can even eat it for snacks, as my adorable little monster and familiars always do.

The thing to remember about recipes is not the measure of ingredients, but the name of the product. Yes! I know it sounds dubious, but that’s probably the reason why I’m not a renowned chef. All I have to my name is the number of friends and family who appreciate my sporadic attempts at cooking. And the best that I can offer to prove my cookworthiness is the fact that the most picky eaters enjoy my recipes: the kids.

So to macaroni. My family has always used Royal Spaghetti. For our spaghetti, that is. For chicken macaroni salad, I always use Royal Salad Macaroni. A no-brainer, apparently.

For mayonnaise, I use only Kraft Real Mayo. Believe me, it makes all the difference in the world. I love Kraft products. I can probably buy all my groceries at a designer Kraft food boutique.

more important than the measurements are the brands

Now I use some pineapple crush to give it a bit of kick. Of course, only Del Monte Crushed Pineapple does the trick. Just squeeze out the juice into a glass and let the little ones drink it. Then stir in the crushed pineapple together with the rest of the ingredients, as they all say.

And what is chicken macaroni salad without the chicken? Always buy Magnolia Chicken Breast for this recipe or any other that calls for chicken breast. Just rub some salt and pepper on it, boil it till tender, then gently tear it to shreds using two forks. For crying out loud, don’t ever use your hands!

Sunmaid Raisins are the best. That’s all I can say. Something about that California sun, probably.

Now that you’ve got all your branded foods ready, just chop up a piece of carrot and about three white onions. The size is entirely up to you. Just go with your heart. The amount of onions I put in this dish always has my brother going into yapping mode. He hates everything about its smell and taste, but I suspect that he once had a love affair with onions that ended badly. Anyway, the dish is always gone before you can get your third fill, which I’m sure you will try to.

Oh, and if you want to make it special, just put in some cubed cheese. Magnolia Quickmelt or Kraft Eden will do just fine. And my sister-in-law likes it with pickles. They give just that extra tang which makes it taste like chicken salad sandwich spread. I prefer Del Monte Sweet Pickle Relish, but they’ve been so hard to find these days. I usually just forgo the pickles.

Well, there you have it. I know my instructions are not as clear as you would have wanted them to be, but I do cook with my heart and the heart never measures. Also, I cook purely for my own entertainment.

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