Ham salad is one of those retro Southern dishes that never goes out of style. Whether you’re serving it sandwiched between airy these gougeres (cheese puffs), on a bed of salad greens, or on toast points or crackers, it is makes a satisfying lunch or snack. While we love a simple, old-fashioned ham salad, we also love fun new variations, like this recipe. Start with good-quality smoked, chopped ham. (This is a great way to use leftovers from a Christmas or Easter ham.) To make the salad, the chopped ham is mixed with finely chopped scallions, finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, Creole mustard, ground cayenne pepper, and black pepper for a hint of heat, and one unexpected ingredient: cream cheese. Instead of the usual mayonnaise or sour cream dressing, we combine all of the ham salad ingredients with cream cheese for extra richness. Be sure to use full fat cream cheese and make sure that it is at room temperature when you’re ready to make the ham salad so that the cream cheese is soft enough to work with. Are you cooking several days ahead for a party? This ham salad can be made up to five days in advance. Store in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving. We recommend pairing this easy, 10-minute ham salad with crunchy gougeres (cheese puffs). The tender-on-the-inside, crisp-on-the-outside cheese puffs turn this simple ham salad into an elegant dish fit for the fanciest occasion. Perfect for a spring brunch or afternoon party, you’re guests will be impressed with this classic Southern dish.
Stir together 4 ounces of cream cheese, 2 scallions, 2 tablespoons of parsley, 1 tablespoon of Creole mustard, 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper in a medium bowl. Fold in 8 ounces of ham.