To celebrate my friend Kel's birthday, a few of us girls decided to get together and do a picnic at the park. She is turning thirty-one this year and she'll be the first to tell you that it's all downhill after thirty. She actually loves to tell people that. I think she is kidding, but I can't really tell. You can never really tell with Kel. Upon hearing that I was still twenty-nine and turning thirty this year, she yelled "your just a baby! Just you wait"---like, wait for what? She acts like at the stroke of midnight on the eve of my thirtieth birthday I will suddenly grow arm hair, sharp teeth, and turn into a werewolf. Besides a flare for the dramatic (which she tries to pin on me most of the time) Kel loves egg salad sandwiches, so deciding what we should eat was a no-brainer. Egg salad is a classic picnic food and evokes a familiar feeling of Americana.
What I'm after in my filling is nice defined chunks of tender egg with perfectly yellow centers (no weird gray stuff) held together by a blanket of mayonnaise with crunchy bits of celery and green onion with a hint of fresh dill and a squeeze of lemon. Yes, that sandwich would go very nicely with a sour pickle and salty, crunchy potato chips along with a refreshing peach iced tea. Well, I guess I have my side dishes. I think it best to not over do something like a picnic. Classic is always best.
Having a gathering like this is fun and at the same time, torturous for someone with my psyche. I can't help but think of other menu's I could possibly serve at a picnic on a future non-existant date. You could go southern style with buckets of cold fried chicken, potato salad and sweet tea. You could go Italian with a bottle of wine, cheeses, baguette and fresh grapes. Swap the wine and grapes for Champagne and strawberries and voila! It's a French picnic. You could go a million different ways and trust me it took restraint from rambling on, but right now I must focus on the two tasks at hand. Making a mean egg salad sandwich and trying not to turn into a werewolf. You are kidding, right Kel?
Classic Egg Salad Sandwiches
makes enough for 6 sandwiches
12 large eggs, hardboiled (method follows) and chopped into smallish bite size chunks
2 ribs of celery, minced
2 scallions, sliced thinly
1/4 cup mayonnaise, plus 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
juice from a quarter of a lemon
1 generous tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
6 hoagie rolls
6 leaves of lettuce
Mix first nine ingredients together until throughly combined. To make the sandwich, split the hoagie rolls in half. Place one leaf of lettuce on each sandwich half and top with egg salad.
Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs (no weird grey yolks)
Place eggs in a large pot with plenty of cool water to cover so that the eggs have a good water to egg ratio. Egg should have room to move around so don't try to cram everything into a small pot. Place the pot on the stove over high heat and bring the water to a boil. Let the water boil for 1 minute, then remove the pot from heat and place a tight fitting lid to cover. Let sit for 20 minutes. Discard the cooking water and run cold water over eggs until very cool. Your eggs need to be cold before you attempt to peel them.