After Easter I found a couple of hams on sale very cheep and I bought them and put them in my top freezer. These were turkey hams that were already cooked. All you needed to do was warm them and slice. I took the last one out and cooked it. There was plenty left over so I made ham salad. It is easy to do if you have a meat grinder. Soon after I bought my kitchen aid mixer 15 years ago, I insisted that I have the attachment package that included the grinder. When I was a child my mother had a hand crank grinder that she clamped to an old table in the basement and she used it to can with and grind meat. One of the things she did was make ham salad from left over ham. It is hard to mess up ham salad.
Historically, ham salad was made from left over deli or canned ham in Western Pennsylvania. Meat markets offered a deli meat that was chopped ham which was called chipped ham that was thinly sliced to order. The left over ends was then chopped up and made into a salad the same way tuna. When I was a child, baloney was some times called mince meat in Western Pennsylvania and was also made into ham salad by the delis. You can now find ham salad all over the country but chipped chopped ham is still a regional favorite of Northen Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.
There is no real recipe to measure out because it depends on how much meat you have to grind up as to how much of the mayonnaise and other things you put in it. It is like making tuna salad with out the hard boiled eggs. What ever you enjoy in your tuna salad you will like in your ham salad.
Basic Ham Salad
- Ground ham or finely chopped
- Chopped celery
- Chopped onion small amount
- Sweet pickle relish to taste
- Chopped finely red sweet pepper
- Mayonnaise or salad dressing
Mix all these ingredients to ground up ham to taste. Chill and serve.
You can also prepare this with cooked deli ham. Just have them cut a couple of pounds of very thick slices for you of inexpensive chopped ham. Then all you have to do is chop it up on a chopping board and mix up the other items.
Very simple. It is a nice cool summer dish that can be served on mixed greens or in a sandwich. It doesn’t take long to disappear. When you are out of ideas and low on money, you can turn a inexpensive pound of bologna into a great meal by making into ham salad.