Farmer Food: “Funeral” Meat aka Ham Salad

 I have a new series called Feeding a Farmer. It’s food that can be prepared in a few minutes to make a meal for those last minute meal times.  To find out how this all originated, check out this link.  Keep in mind, none of these foods are glamorous…they are fast…and not too bad tasting.

When Hubby and I were first married we were broke….all the way broke…no money at all.  No one could ever accuse me of marrying him for his money but we were in love and that’s what counted.  We ate all sorts of really cheap cuts of meat….liver, braunschweiger, turkey legs, jack mackerel….anything cheap.  One of our other cheap favorites was “funeral” meat (or at least that’s what hubby called it)…actually Ham Salad.


Hubby calls ham salad “Funeral” Meat because growing up every time there was a funeral, ham salad sandwiches were severed for the meal.  My boys love ham salad too so when I was at a thrift store and saw a meat grinder, I immediately purchased it.  For $5, it was a good buy.

Before purchasing the grinder I always bought the ham salad in town pre-made…now, I make it myself.

This is one of those recipes that is completely to taste and how you like your ham salad seasoned.  I grind the an appropriate amount of ham for how many I am feeding.  After the meat is ground, I add mayo, pickle relish, wet minced garlic and pepper.   I’ll make some guesses and say 3 pounds of ham, 1/2 c mayo, 1 heaping Tablespoon of pickle relish and wet minced garlic and 1/4 t pepper.  You may want to add more mayo..whatever is your liking.  Stir that all up and YUM.  Ham salad sandwiches make great summer meal with some baked beans, watermelon and cucumber salad.

In the summer hubby prefers lunch to be a light meal and this is a perfect summer meal…or a perfect fall meal when he’s in the combine.

16 thoughts on “Farmer Food: “Funeral” Meat aka Ham Salad

  1. Jody

    When I was a kiddo, my mom would have ham salad sandwiches for us all the time! I used to love them, but haven’t had one in ages. I think it’s time to make an oldie-but-goodie!

  2. Darlene

    My hubby loves them too, although I’ve never included the garlic. MIght have to try that. I can certainly identify with the “broke young couple” story! We ate a lot of kraft dinner back in the day!

  3. Jen

    Yum is right! Instead of buttering the bread, use cream cheese, cut off the crusts and then cut in quarters or use fancy cutters…………now you have finger foods for a summer wedding. LOL I don’t add the garlic though, but I’ll give it a try next time.

  4. Mayleen

    In the farming community I grew up in, “funeral” cheese is still served at funerals and you can buy it at the small grocery store there. I’m not sure what kind of cheese it is but if you ask for “funeral cheese”, they know what you want!

  5. Vic in NH

    We love ham salad, too! It is still a bargain if you buy the deli end-cuts, which gives you a great variety of ham brands to throw into the food processor for the salad.

  6. Judy D in upstate NY

    I have my grandmother’s meat grinder and it makes perfect ham salad. She always used cut up olives in her ham salad and buttered her bread and that’s how I make it. My family loves it this way.

  7. Linda L

    I too remember ham salad sandwiches. My mom made it with Spam, fresh onion and sweet pickles, all of which were sent through the food grinder together. Mayo and pepper were added last, don’t remember garlic though. I still love it but forget to make it.

  8. Cindy

    You got that meat grinder for a song. My brother took my mom’s grinder, now I have to
    find one for me. Thanks for sharing and bringing back memories.

  9. Joyce Mitchell

    I remember when we had ham leftover from a baked ham, my Mom would grind it up with cheddar cheese. The ham bone of course was cooked in a pot with navy beans. Loved those beans.

  10. Daisy Christopherson

    Jo,
    That sound so good I think I will try it just for something new and different to eat.

    Also can you tell me what magazine the Pineapple Quilt pattern is from. I did not know where to start looking for it in past blogs so thought you might have a quick answer for me.
    Thanks, Daisy

  11. Margaret

    My mom made ham salad all the time but she used bologna because they could buy it by the chub. That is a twenty pound log of it. She also added horseradish instead of garlic because we grew that.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *