Macaroni Salad

Macaroni salad is a standard component of the typical Hawaiian plate lunch, served in every corner of the islands. It's heaped onto the plate alongside rice, meat of various kinds, and, sometimes, gravy.



½ lb. (about 2 cups) dry elbow macaroni
2½ cups mayonnaise
2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater
2 tbsp. finely chopped white onion (about ¼ small onion)
1 small rib celery, finely chopped
Pinch sugar
Freshly ground black pepper
6 large leaves green leaf lettuce
1 tsp. sweet paprika


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain macaroni and spread in a single layer on a sheet pan to let cool.

2. Transfer cooled macaroni to a large bowl. Add mayonnaise, eggs, onions, celery, sugar, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir well to combine. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

3. To serve, place a lettuce leaf on the center of each of 6 small plates. Top each leaf with a generous scoop of macaroni salad and sprinkle with paprika. Serve immediately.

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