My Aunt Jeanie wasn’t really my aunt at all. She was the wife of my father’s cousin, Uncle Buster, who had his own fascinating story. Aunt Jeanie and I shared a birthday, and I always looked forward to getting a birthday card from her in the mail, full of her beautiful penmanship. She was the kindest woman you’ve ever met, but she had a fire to her, too, which I loved. I miss her darling, little, dimpled chuckle, her eyes sparkling.
I think of my Aunt Jeanie every time I make her famous macaroni salad. My mom has also been making it for years, so I grew up with it as a part of many Easter, Mother’s Day and Fourth of July celebrations. She and I jokingly push the leftovers on each other, because we know that if they stay in our homes, we’ll devour them in no time.
Aunt Jeanie’s macaroni salad is surprisingly simple, but I think it’s the paprika that really sets it apart. I hope your family enjoys this delicious, picnic side as much as ours does.
Aunt Jeanie’s Famous Macaroni Salad
Makes 4–6 servings
One box elbox macaroni
1 c. Miracle Whip
1 tsp. (divided) paprika
1 diced cucumber
1/2 red onion (chopped finely)
1 pint halved cherry tomatoes
1/4 tsp. salt
Boil the pasta for 7 minutes and drain. Rinse under cold water. Give the pasta 10-15 stirs to release the water from the inside of the macaroni. Mix gently with Miracle Whip. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. paprika and stir in softly. Mix in cucumber, onion, cherry tomatoes and salt. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 tsp. paprika on top. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve (could be served immediately, too).