Ham Salad

Are you a meat salad eater? As a child, I don’t remember ever having a sandwich made from chopped meat and assorted crunchy additions.

Tuna sandwiches were bread spread with Miracle Whip and canned tuna set on top, maybe a lettuce leaf was included.¬†There was no such thing as chicken salad. If you had a chicken sandwich it was sliced chicken meat on buttered bread (sounds a bit dry doesn’t it?). Ham was another sandwich choice, but it was slices of ham on Miracle Whip (we called it mayonnaise, little did I know that was not mayonnaise). Now with the ham you probably got a slice of cheese. That was all I knew about sandwiches with meat.

Years later, I mean I was an adult, before I knew of the tastes of chicken salad, tuna salad, and ham salad as options for sandwiches. So now when we have ham, the leftovers will be ground up and a ham salad is created.

What do you put in ham salad? I tend to add and add until the bowl is brimming. There might be hard boiled eggs, celery, sweet pickle relish, some finely chopped onion, shredded cheddar cheese, perhaps a dab of horseradish sauce, and of course, Miracle Whip. Any or all ingredients will find its way into my ham salad. It’s never the same twice.

Often I will bring my mom some of the food I fix for dinner. This way she gets some variety and she doesn’t have to cook. I mentioned to my mom that I was going to bring over some food and ham salad was one of the items I named.

“You don’t have to put so much into the ham salad,” she tells me.

I’m confused, “What do you mean? It’s not ham salad if I don’t put in celery, relish, and other stuff.”¬†What I’m figuring out from this conversation is she doesn’t like my ham salad.

“What if I just bring you the ground ham, and you can put in whatever you like,” I suggest.

That would be perfect. So now I’m wondering, what constitutes ham salad?