When I order an egg salad sandwich from a deli, it’s never as good as my mama’s. It’s generally dripping in mayo and has way too much crunchy celery. I recall my mother dipping her finger in the mixing bowl and giving me a taste of the still-warm goodness while being asked if it needed anything. It rarely did. The egg salad of my youth is a creamy, curry-infused concoction that people of all ages enjoy. My love of egg salad has not waned over the years and is now one of my favorite things to make with my own daughter.
We often have other little 4-year-olds over at the house and I’ve discovered that egg salad sandwiches are something that virtually every kid likes. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that the kiddos are always very involved in the cooking process and by the end, can’t wait to build their own sandwich. This is my mama’s awesome recipe which only takes about 30 minutes to make, including the time to boil the eggs. If you are prepping with kids, check out the notes at the bottom of the post for ways they can help you in the kitchen.
Mama’s Egg Salad
Serves 3 – Estimate roughly 2 eggs per person.
6 large eggs
1-2 Tbs mayonnaise
1-2 tsp yellow curry powder
1-2 tsp relish or chopped sweet pickles
sea salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste
Sandwich makings – bread or lettuce wrap, sliced tomatoes, red onion/scallions, pickles, avocado, fresh basil, etc. You can also put a large spoonful over a green salad.
Step 1: Boil Eggs
Use pastured eggs for best taste and most nutrients. I’ve learned that everyone has their own method of hard boiling eggs. This is mine. Place eggs in medium saucepan. Cover eggs in water. Turn on high heat. As soon as water comes to full rolling boil, reduce heat a little to medium/high, set timer for 10 minutes, and boil eggs. When timer goes off, remove pot from the stove and immediately run cold water over the eggs to stop cooking.
Step 2: Prep Sandwich Makings
While eggs are cooking, prep your sandwich makings (see above for ideas).
Step 3: Make Egg Salad
Peel and rinse eggs. Rough chop them, or if you have an egg slicer, I slice the egg three ways to create little egg cube pieces. Kids love to do this part. Mix in 1 Tbs mayonnaise and check consistency. If you prefer your egg salad more dry, this may be all you need. If you like gobs of mayo, keep adding until you get the consistency you like. Once mayo is fully incorporated, add in curry powder, relish and salt & pepper to taste. Measurements above range based on your tastes. Love curry? Add lots! Same goes for relish. Oh, and if you and the kids are really into the crunchy celery thing, feel free to thrown in some finely chopped celery.
Step 4: Build Your Sandwich
Use any type of bread, pita, lettuce wrap, bagel or cracker. European style rye is my personal favorite. You’ll get bonus points if you toast the bread first. Layer with lettuce, sliced tomato, and red onion. Fresh basil, avocado and sliced pickles are wonderful too. Leftover egg salad stores beautifully in an air-tight container (love these Pyrex ones) for several days. Enjoy!
Get the Kids Involved!
My daughter and her friends love helping me with this recipe. A few tips: Invest in some kid-friendly knives – check out these inexpensive and awesome ones by Curious Chef. Don’t have any? Plastic picnic knives work too (should be serrated and please, wash and reuse). Before you begin, make sure each kid has his/her own knife, cutting board and stool. Let’s just stop the arguing and sharing issues before they start.
Here are some of the things young kids can do:
- Take all the items you’ll need out of the fridge
- Gently put the eggs in the pot
- Set the timer
- Peel and chop the eggs – the beauty with egg salad is they can be chopped virtually any way and it will still be delicious! As I mentioned above, the egg slicer is always a hit too.
- Help prepare the sandwich makings – tear lettuce, chop pickles, cut tomatoes, get out slices of bread
- Measure out mayo, curry powder and relish. Add salt & pepper. Mix everything up.
- Kids love being the taste testers. Ask their opinion…”Does it need more pepper? More curry?”
- Older kids can help read the recipe and tell you which measuring spoon they should use.
- Let everyone build their own sandwich!
If you are trying to cut down on bread consumption, make an open-face sandwich like the one pictured here. Or, serve the egg-salad in a small bowl with a half-slice of bread, tortilla, crackers, etc. to “dip” with. Works great for gluten-free kids (make sure bread is GF), soy & dairy-free kids (make sure mayo is not made with soy or any dairy products) and many vegetarians.