Hawaiian macaroni salad, part of the holy trinity that makes up plate lunch, is something close to my heart. Everyone has their own special recipe and every since I visited Helena’s Hawaiian Food this past fall, I’ve been trying to figure out what made it taste so good. My dad clued me in that he uses whole milk in his mac salad which makes it taste creamier and mellows out the vinegar.
So when I saw a recipe for Hawaiian Pasta Salad on Kim’s blog Feed Me Seymour, my mind was made for this month’s Secret Recipe Club pick. Kim prides herself on recipes that aren’t daunting or scary such as: Black Tea Honey Scones, Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows, Butterbeer Cupcakes, Rolo Cookies, and Nutella-stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Since I made this mac salad in the middle of a snow storm, I had to improvise. There was no macaroni pasta at the store so I picked the closest thing; I had to make my own mayonnaise out of olive oil, egg yolks, mustard, and salt; I used almond milk instead of regular milk. Using a more traditional milk, especially whole milk, will make this much creamier and less tangy.
Regardless, this was a mighty fine macaroni salad — 2 scoops of this and some Honey Garlic Chicken really hit the spot.
For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I was paired up with Sally from Bewitching Kitchen. Sally is a super smart and fit biochemist transplant from Brazil by way of California, Paris, and now Manhattan. There are many recipes on Sally’s site, including Carrot Orzo, Farfalle with Kale Pesto, Biscoff Oatmeal Cookies, Speculaas, Pumpkin Espresso Loaf, Nutella Drop Cookies, Snickerdoodles with a Twist, Butterscotch Brownies, Pumpkin Shrimp Curry, Sabu’s Spicy Coconut Chicken, Lemony Chicken Curry, Bon Bon Chicken, and Clay Pot Pork. I could tell through my recipe selection that I was really in the mood for curry, so I chose Green Curry Pork Tenderloin. Instead of buying green curry paste for this recipe I used the yellow curry paste I had in the pantry.
This was a very good recipe that tasted great. It did take a little while to get all of the recipe components prepared and we still needed to make a supplemental side to go with the protein. The pork was cooked perfectly and went great with the sauce. The marinade was easy to make, though we substituted the reduced sodium soy sauce with regular soy sauce diluted with water. We don’t have a grill in our building so we roasted it in the oven and finished with the broiler. I must admit that I was intimidated when it came time to make our own curry sauce, but it came together pretty easily. The sauce was quite mild so we would up the heat next time, especially since this recipe made tons of extra sauce.
The best thing about this dish were the candied nuts on top. We couldn’t find pumpkin seeds so replaced them with shelled pistachios. The nuts were quite addictive and we used the leftovers to top a salad the next day.
I got the idea for this recipe from Serious Eats. This recipe “passes”, and gets to be written in the real Recipe book!
The main part that I kept over-looking was the “marinate over-night” part, so just to let you know, you need to marinate this over night!!! Okay, now that that’s over. This was served with red lentils cooked in chicken broth with some sprouts and roasted red pepper and toasted naan. Sounds good, right? The lentils were bad, but everything else was delicious!