I used to hate sandwiches especially wheat ones with one layer of salami or ham and a thin spread of mayonnaise. I had that exact sandwich everyday from kindergarten until 8th grade. No changes in the type of bread or filling. Always a thin layer of mayonnaise and an over salted limp slice of cold cut.
Then one day during 6th grade for some unknown reason, my mom expressed how much she loved me by making me macaroni salad for lunch. Once I found out she could make other meals besides sandwiches, I would beg and cry for ANYTHING, but the wheat bread sandwiches. You can imagine how much I salivated and ate with pleasure when I had macaroni salad. Sometimes the pasta was switched out for potatoes to make potato salad.
As I grew older, I realized that the macaroni salad weren't that special. It was elbow macaroni mixed with strips of cold cut and tossed in a light mayonnaise dressing. Now the dressing wasn't even that impressive. It was a mix of what we had in the cupboard: a scoop of mayonnaise, pinch of sugar and salt, heavy dose of pepper and garlic powder, and a dash of vinegar. When I started cooking in high school and I tried replicating the dressing, it tasted good, but it wasn't as memorable and pleasurable as my middle school days.
Note: Compared to my memories, this dressing is much more flavorful. It has the right mixture of tang and sweetness. Like my memories, this is meant to lightly coat a pasta salad (or potato salad) for one. Feel free to double the recipe for a heavier coating. In my salads, I generally have 1 cup of cooked pasta, 3/4 to 1/2 cup of carrots, raw onions, or celery, and 1/4 cup of protein.
1 garlic clove, pressed/crushed
1 heaping TBSP mayonnaise
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
4 to 5 shakes of black pepper
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp honey
- In a bowl, add all the ingredients and whisk to mix.
- When all the pasta salad elements are prepared, toss the dressing with the pasta.
- For best flavor, let the pasta sit with the dressing overnight in the refrigerator.