March 07, 2013

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad - Recipe

Having traveled around Hawaii before I've recently been trying to recreate L&L Hawaiian Barbecue macaroni salad. There are a million different ways people have tried to replicate this but they've all fallen flat in my opinion. That being said, this recipe I put together tastes the most similar to it in my opinion... so, until the actual recipe for it is ever divulged I hope you can at least enjoy mine in the mean time!
1 1/2 Cups - Elbow Noodles
1/2 Gallon (plus more for rinsing) - Water
1 Tbsp - Sea Salt (or 1/2 Tbsp - Table Salt)
1/2 Cup - Hellmann's Mayonnaise/Best Foods Mayonnaise
1/4 Cup - Carrots, pre-shredded matchsticks (chop slightly)
1/2 Tbsp - Morton's 'Seasoned Salt'
1 Tbsp - White Sugar
1 Tbsp - Half and Half (or Whole Milk)
2/3 Tbsp - McCormick's 'Molasses Bacon' seasoning *Optional*

Pour the water into a large pot and bring to a rapid boil on High-Med heat. Add the salt and noodles, bring water to a rapid boil again (be sure to stir noodles occasionally to prevent sticking). Rapid boil the noodles for around 25 minutes (or until fat and soft).
Noodles are almost done cooking
Drain noodles from the hot water and run under cold running water until noodles are cool, and drain well.
Sauce Mix
Combine the other ingredients in a bowl, stir until blended, and wait several minutes to allow the sugar to dissolve. Add in the noodles to the mix and stir together. Refrigerate for at least an hour or until the mac salad 'sets'. Stir the mac salad before serving.

Side Notes:
I believe I've mentioned before on this blog that all mayonnaise does not taste the same. If you live in Hawaii, their version of 'Hellmann's' mayonnaise is called 'Best Foods' mayonnaise although, I believe certain mainland states they also have it labeled as Best Foods mayonnaise.

With this recipe I made it's really easy to add in additional ingredients to alter this to your personal liking... such as some diced hard-boiled egg, sweet relish, etc. My personal favorite is to add in McCormick's grill mates in Molasses Bacon to the sauce mix (as you may have noticed in my above recipe), which makes for a great side dish to accompany some BBQ (although this is not in a typical Hawaiian mac salad... although I think it should be, haha). If you want your mac salad a bit more on the tangy side than cut down on the mayo a bit and add in some sour cream in its place.

The hardest part to making this dish is the noodles, it's very easy to have them be under-cooked for a mac salad as the cold water does seem to make them firm up and shrink a bit (most the time I cook my boxed noodles for 15 min, but that wasn't working for my mac salad so, you end up having to basically overcook the noodles).

If you're asking yourself "what's so Hawaiian about this dish?" well, to people in Hawaii there version of "Hawaiian" doesn't mean it has to consist of pineapple, Asian ingredients, fish, etc. Sometimes it's more about simplicity, cost, and how to feed the masses. Besides, you'd probably get burnt out on the stereotypical Hawaiian ingredients if you lived in Hawaii... or not? ALOHA!

No comments: