In my blog entry last week, I mentioned a couple of DIY gifts for Father’s Day for the man who likes to grill. This got me to thinking about barbecuing (yummy!) and my favorite dish – homemade potato salad.
Everyone seems to have an opinion on how they like their potato salad: more egg, less mayo, bigger chunks. And like most children, I like the way my mother made it best. Instead of chunks, my family makes a mashed potato salad.
I know what you are saying. “Mash the potatoes!? Cold mashed potatoes? Something just didn't sound right about that.”
It might sound a little weird; it was the best potato salad I've ever tasted. In my opinion, one of the most common problems with potato salads is when you get large flavorless chunks of potatoes swimming in mayo or dressing. With mashed potatoes, you get the perfect distribution of oil, vinegar, onion and all the other tasty tidbits in every bite.
However, this recipe wasn't written down per say for our family does it by taste. When I requested a written how-to, I was given an ingredients list and nothing more. It was a few trial and error experiments before my husband and I came up with the first Mashed Potato Recipe in actual recipe form.
The other good thing about potato salad is that it can be scaled to fit your serving needs, which is why I think it was never written down. All you need is the key ingredient, potatoes, and you can add the rest of the ingredients to taste. I have made batches for two people up to 22 guests.
Without further ado . . .
Mashed Potato Salad
Boiling potatoes whole will take longer to cook than if they are chopped up into large chunks, but a chopped potato will absorb water and leave the potato slightly water logged. When I'm in a hurry I will chop my potatoes before cooking, but most of the time I boil them whole with the skins on.
For the perfect hard-boiled egg, start with the eggs in cold water and bring to a boil. Boil for 10 minutes and then immediately submerge eggs in ice water. Prolonged cooking will cause a green layer between the yolks and the whites.
Prep time 40 minutes
4 large potatoes
4 hard boiled eggs
1/2 medium onion
1 stalk celery
1/4 cup pimento or roasted bell pepper
4 tablespoons pickle relish
1 cup mayonnaise
4 teaspoons vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Directions: (print this recipe)
1) Scrub potatoes clean and cut out any eyes, sprouts, or blemishes.
2) Place whole potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer until potatoes are soft, about 40 minutes. When a parring knife easily pierces the potatoes, they are done.
3) Hard-boil eggs by placing in a medium pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook 10 minutes and then transfer eggs to an ice bath.
4) Chop onion, celery, and pimento to a small dice.
5) Dice 2 of the hard boiled eggs.
6) Drain potatoes and chop into large chunks (mostly just to break up skins)
7) Mash potatoes.
8) Add onion, celery, pimento, pickle relish, diced eggs, mayonnaise, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
9) Transfer salad to a serving dish.
10) Slice remaining two eggs and arrange on top of salad. Dust with cayenne.
That’s it! Dig in and enjoy!
Until next time!
Photo and recipe courtesy of Mike and Weegee Sachtjen