1 cup dried elbow macaroni or short short tubular pasta
1/4 cup diced shallot
1/4 cup diced celery
1 1/2 tablespoons celery leaves or parsley
1 plum tomato, cut in small chunks
2 very small baby dill pickles, cut into small dice
1/4 cup good-quality mayonnaise
1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
3/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons sour cream
1/8 cup Caramelized Onion Balsamic Spread*
Coarse salt and coarsely-ground pepper to taste
1 hard-boiled egg, sliced
Celery leaves or parsley for garnish
* This is a product of Robert Rothschild and is a combination of caramelized onions, balsamic vinegar, and crushed red pepper. If you do not have this, try using any number of condiments with onion, such as an onion and pepper relish.
Prepare pasta according to package directions. In a colander, rinse the cooked macaroni with cold water, drain briefly so that the macaroni remains moist, and place in a large bowl. Learn How To Cook Pasta Properly.
In a large bowl, combine the cooked macaroni, shallot, celery, celery leaves, tomato, and dill pickles; set aside. Always add seasoning to the pasta first and then the mayonnaise. This is so the seasonings can penetrate the flavor of the cooked pasta.
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard, sugar, vinegar, sour cream, onion balsamic spread, salt, and pepper.
Pour mayonnaise dressing over the macaroni mixture and gently mix to combine. Taste and adjust salt and pepper (if needed) to your taste.
Place hard-boiled egg slices over the top, sprinkle with celery leaves, and then sprinkle with smoked paprika. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
If you have made your macaroni salad ahead of time, just stir in a little warm water to loosen the texture. After a few minutes the macaroni will absorb the extra water.
Makes 2 to 3 servings.