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Potato Salad – Almost a recipe

June 30, 2013

Someone asked me about my potato salad recently and I thought, “I should really write that down.”  And then I thought, “Hey, I already did that!”  So here it is:

  • potatoes (scrub them!)
  • eggs
  • onion
  • dill (fresh is best here!)
  • mayonnaise
  • garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional) (how can bacon possibly be optional??)

If I am very lazy, I will put the eggs in the pot when I am boiling the potatoes.  Small potatoes if I have them, quartered or so if not.  As many eggs as sound good.  Three, four, five…it doesn’t matter if I cook too many – eggs make a good snack.  The lazy way, yes.  Potatoes chopped, not peeled (too fussy), eggs, a clove or two of garlic, smashed and thrown in.  Just barely cover it all with water.  If you know you are forgetful, extra water.  Really.

Turn the burner on high and let the whole thing come to a boil.  Put a lid on it.  If you’re really lazy, or have started this project way past bedtime, turn it off and leave it on the stove overnight.  You did scrub the potatoes, right?   And boiled this stuff?  Ok.  If you have started this endeavor at a reasonable hour, then turn the heat to low and let everything cook 30 -45 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.

Meanwhile, chop up a red onion.  A white onion.  Whatever is around.  If you chop too much, throw the extra in an omelette tomorrow or into tonight’s dinner salad.  It will all work out in the end.

When the potatoes are forkable, drain it all and discard the garlic.  Sometimes I can’t find the clove and am left with the mushy peel.  I just throw that away and trust that no one I am cooking for could possibly mind a mouthful of boiled garlic.

If your potatoes are still warm, throw in a wee bit of butter.  Olive oil.  A tablespoon?  That sounds about right.  Cold potatoes?  Skip it.

Peel the eggs.  I don’t like yolks in my potato salad.  (This makes the lazy way even more wonderful – it doesn’t matter if the yolks are green.)  Chop the whites into chunks.  Chunks big enough to hold their own against the potato pieces.  Add them to the potatoes.  The yolks at my house end up on the cook’s privilege plate.  A little sprinkle of salt and they don’t usually survive to the end of the cooking.  Mmmmmm, snacks.

Add enough chopped dill to make it colorful and tasty.  Throw in as much onion as you like.  Stir in the bacon.  A lot, a little, whatever you like.  Stop here if you live with someone who hates mayonnaise.  (I hear there are people like that.)  Otherwise, mix in the mayo, less than you think, maybe a tablespoon at a time, until the potatoes are barely coated.  If you are feeling whimsical, add a splash/pinch of your favorite mustard.

Pop the whole thing in the refrigerator until it is time for dinner.  Check your seasonings.  Add salt and pepper as you will.  Serve with joy.

It is important to remember that the potato salad police are very backlogged and will not likely come to your house to tell you you’re doing it wrong.  Peel the potatoes if you want to.  Leave out the egg.  It is ok.  Just cook already!

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