Summer Sunday Bonus! Jardinière Salad

Not all of those recipes our moms clipped and stashed in a box back in the day are good for nothing but a laugh.

Take this, a recipe my mom dutifully clipped from the back of a Kraft Mac and Cheese box back in the day and then…

never, ever made it.

I came across the recipe once I was learning to cook and, well, my grandfather (who would eat anything) and I were intrigued.

In deference to pepé (my grandfather), he would not eat goat, apparently, but that is totally his loss, in my opinion.

•1 box mac and cheese dinner
•1/4 cup butter
•1/4 cup milk
•1/2 cup Catalina dressing
•1/2 cup mayonnaise
•1 tbsp chopped onion
•1 cup diced celery
•1 cup diced cucumber
•1 jar diced pimiento, drained
•1/4 cup sliced peperoncini
•1/4 tsp Seasoned Salt
•1/2 tsp black pepper
•1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper

A note on the veggies added: feel free to add and/or subtract according to your tastes and what you have on hand. Scallions work a treat, as do diced bell peppers and freshly chopped parsley.

Prepare the mac and cheese dinner according to the directions on the box, but rinse the noodles after cooking and before returning to the pan with the butter, milk, and powdered cheese.

Stir until you have a nice pot of mac and cheese, but then, while the macaroni is still warm, stir in the Catalina dressing and the mayonnaise until you have a uniformly creamy, reddish orange pot.

Set aside to cool, then stir in the veggies until nicely mixed.

Transfer to a bowl, cover, and stash in the fridge to chill before serving.

Note: you do what you want, but I firmly believe that a glass bowl chills salads far better than plastic or wood.

When ready to serve, if the macaroni seems to have absorbed too much of the Catalina and mayonnaise, feel free to stir in a couple of tablespoons of either or both to “refresh” the salad.




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