Mariel here. Egg salad once occupied the same reviled space as Bloody Marys, tomato soup and green olives. My mom has always been a fan, but for the life of me, I could not figure out how or why people would toss together hardboiled eggs and mayo and slap it between two slices of bread. Sick. Or is it?
My husband and I took a much-needed vacation last week and I lolled on the beach lazily turning the pages of as many books as I could get my paws on (I tore through The Leopard, Bel Canto, Boomerang, The Diving Bell & the Butterfly, and The Redbreast in under a week). I also “caught up” on my magazines, which had been sitting neglected on my nightstand for months.
As I was flipping through the pages of SHAPE, I spied a delicious-looking “Enlightened” Egg Salad Pita Sandwich and was struck with an intense craving – so intense that I could think of nothing but egg salad for the remainder of the trip. Thank you kind sir, but you can keep your miso-glazed lobster. No duck confit for moi, garçon. Just give me a hardboiled egg and some mayo before I rip your face right off.
Sadly, since I had traveled by plane to Mexico and not via a time-machine back to the 1950s, I was SOL, as the kids might say. Upon my return home, however, the very first meal I made myself was an egg salad sandwich, daintily pressed between two pita pockets and topped with crisp cucumbers and crunchy bacon. Heaven. I suppose I could’ve saved us a boatload of money and spent the week mass producing deli salads instead of holidaying in the tropics, but next year I’ll remember to BYO-eggs if we hit up the beach again.
The Ultimate Egg Salad Sandwich
Makes enough for four pitas
Gently adapted from a recipe in the January 2012 issue of SHAPE
6 large eggs – stock
3 Tablespoons light mayonnaise – stock
2½ teaspoons Dijon mustard – stock
¼ teaspoon paprika – stock
¼ teaspoon kosher salt – stock
Generous grind of black pepper – stock
2 Tablespoons of finely chopped sweet onion – $0.99
1 Tablespoon of finely chopped fresh chives – $1.99
4 large pitas, sliced in half – $1.39
4 strips of crispy turkey bacon – $3.49
3 cups of lightly packed greens/lettuce – $1.50
½ large cucumber, sliced – $0.99
Grand total assuming well-stocked kitchen: $10.35
Cost per pita: $2.58
1. Place your six eggs in a med saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover saucepan, turn off flame and let eggs sit for about 12 minutes. Strain hot water and transfer eggs to an ice water bath, let sit for 5 minutes before peeling and coarsely chopping the eggs.
2. In the meantime, whisk together the mayo, mustard, paprika, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Stir in the onion and chives.
3. After coarsely chopping the peeled eggs, gently fold them into the mayo mixture.
4. Cook the bacon until crispy.
5. Slice the pitas in half and stuff each side with a scoop of egg salad, half a strip of bacon, cucumber slices and lettuce. Enjoy immediately!