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Friday, July 8, 2011

Random Food Fridays - Potato Salad

Some yummy foods are fairly hard to display in a glamorous manner. This humble potato salad is a case in point. A sunny, yellow plate, some parsley and a little paprika helped to prepare this salad for its close-up. But, while we all like to look our best, we all know it's character that really counts.

Mr. Dwayne and I just celebrated our festival week - his birthday on Thursday, our anniversary on Saturday, and my birthday on Monday. His special birthday request was for a steak dinner with potato salad. Like many of our favorite foods, we have learned to apply moderation and distribution. This big batch is enough to share - we ended up taking half to our in-law's house. This quantity is perfect for a potluck.

Some commercially prepared potato salads are pretty good, but I've never found any that I like as well as my own. The beauty of making anything at home is that you get to have it your own way. My potato salad is on the sweet pickle plan. You can make a very delicious potato salad on the dill pickle plan if you prefer. My Aunt Barbara's dill pickle potato salad rocks! The first step in making a great potato salad is finding a pickle you really love. Your potato salad will only be as good as your pickles. I suggest that you do not use pickle relish. Instead, chop your favorite pickles into a chunky dice. I love it when I get a crunchy burst of pickle in each creamy, potato-y bite.

Potato Salad (Sweet Pickle Plan)
8 large red potatoes
1 stalk celery, diced
1/2 a large carrot, grated
1 tbsp. chopped parsley
1/4 cup sweet pickle juice
6 small sweet pickles, chopped
1 large can sliced olives
1/4 cup finely diced sweet onion
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
1 tbsp. mustard
1 tsp. salt
freshly ground black pepper

Scrub and poke the potatoes and place in a large pot of salted water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer gently until tender. Mine took about 2o minutes. Remove the potatoes to a plate to cool while you prepare the rest of the salad ingredients.

When potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut them into bite sized pieces. There is no need to peel thin skinned potatoes. Place the vegetables and warm potatoes in a large bowl. Pour the pickle juice over the warm potatoes and toss. Combine the mayo, sour cream, mustard, salt and pepper and then stir into the potato and vegetable mixture. Chill thoroughly before serving.

Makes plenty.

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