Monday, July 4, 2011

Summertime Favorite


Potato Salad is a favorite summertime side dish.  We serve it at barbecues and picnics with hot dogs and hamburgers.  It is considered an important part of the “fixings.”  But, not all potato salad is created equal.  Actually, most potato salads hold a distinguished place on my Scary Food List. 

I grew up with American-style potato salad: over-cooked potatoes drowning in commercial mayonnaise, or even worse---sandwich spread.  The addition of chopped celery, green peppers and onion would sometimes redeem these mayonnaise-drenched side dishes.  The addition of hard-boiled eggs was an instant no go.  I’m a real hard-boiled egg fan, and I am quite partial to Deviled Eggs, but in potato salad? No thank you.

For this potato fan, German Potato Salad was a revelation. It is easy to prepare and travels well. Best of all, potato salad never tasted so good. 

Notes:  Do's:  Yellow onion can be substituted for red onion; Red potatoes can be substituted for Yukon Golds; Curly parsley can be substituted for flat leaf parsley;  Select potatoes that are about the same size Don't:   Substitute yellow mustard for the Dijon; Over cook the potatoes or allow them to sit in the water once they are cooked, as this will cause them to be mushy; Peel the potatoes before or after cooking. 

German Potato Salad

2 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes
4 Tbsp. chopped red onion
1 clove garlic, mined
1 Tbsp. capers, rinsed and drained
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill
2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3 to 4 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. red peppercorns, crushed (optional)

Put the potatoes in a large pot with salted water to cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and lightly boil potatoes until they just tender and test done with a paring knife.  (When the potatoes are "just" tender, there should be a little resistance to the knife as it pierces the flesh.)  Watch potatoes carefully and be sure not to over cook them.  Drain the potatoes in a colander and rinse with cold water.  Drain well, and cool only enough for them to be easily handled.  


If the potatoes are large cut them in quarters or halves, leave small
potatoes whole.  Do not peel.  Put the potatoes in a mixing bowl and add the remaining ingredients. 





Gently mix with a rubber spatula coating the potatoes well.

Serve the salad slightly warm or cool completely--about 30 minutes, before covering tightly and placing in the refrigerator.  Allow the salad to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.  Adjust seasoning and serve.  Store any leftovers tightly covered in the refrigerator.


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