Friday, November 6, 2015

Foodie Fridays: Georgia Cracker Salad

We have literally been under a cloud the whole week.  It has been either rainy, drizzly, misty, or foggy the whole time.  We have not seen the sun in so long I am beginning to feel like a cave dweller.  It is humid and neither hot nor cold -- in fact, yesterday the temperature hovered at around 60 degrees all day long, since at least 5 AM when I got up.  This is the sort of day that makes me crave comfort food, but it is not cold enough for a hot dish, so I decided to try a new variation on a cold favorite.  Georgia Cracker Salad is a twist on egg salad, and no, the name is not meant to be derogatory.  There really are crackers in the salad!

My version is based on a recipe for Old-Fashioned South Georgia Cracker Salad.  Even though Saltines are the tradition, I don't like them and did not want to buy a whole package but only use part of it.  I bought oyster crackers instead, which I do like, and I will eat the leftover crackers on soup.  I also reduced the amount of onion and bell pepper by half, and used canned diced tomatoes instead of whole ones.  Even though the contributor of the original recipe recommended the whole tomatoes because she found crushed ones too much like a sauce, the diced canned tomatoes do still retain their shape and texture, and they worked quite well for me.  At the last minute I decided to add a little sweet pickle relish, as I like it in regular egg salad.  I like it in this recipe as well, but even without the relish the cracker salad was good, if a bit bland.

I had just returned from a rare trip to Trader Joe's (which is a little too far away for me to justify regular visits) and had purchased some garlic naan bread, so I topped a piece with the salad.  I know, way too many carbs (who eats crackers on top of bread?), but when the weather is bleak I crave lots of carbs, and this combination satisfied my craving nicely.  Of course this salad is best served immediately while the crackers are still a bit crunchy, but I will have no problem finishing off the rest of my Georgia Cracker Salad over the weekend, as there seems to be no end in sight for our miserable weather and I will continue to want comfort food!

Georgia Cracker Salad

1 can (about 14 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained (I use unsalted)
4 oz. (1/2 of an 8 oz. box) oyster crackers, coarsely crushed
4 T. mayonnaise
1/2 medium onion, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
2 T. sweet pickle relish
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl.  Stir gently to combine (make sure the mayonnaise is evenly distributed).  Serve immediately.  Serves 6.

Note: The onion flavor was pretty strong, so next time I will reduce the amount by half (1/4 medium onion instead of 1/2), and/or maybe use a sweet Vidalia onion instead of a red one.

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