Saturday, April 30, 2011

German Potato Salad

Oh, what to do on a sunny, cloudless 80 degree day in Southern Carolina?  With a sky super blue and a whole afternoon full of nothing to do?  Why, silly, you bar-b-que!  I do love it when I accidentally rhyme.  Ok, I admit, that last one was somewhat forced.  I just couldn't resist.

Speaking of not being able to resist, may I introduce you German Potato Salad?  After volunteering at an outside work event this morning, us in the younger crowd decided to host our own celebratory cookout with a significantly smaller beer line and a few games of cornhole.

And what this event afforded me was the first opportunity of the summer to make a recipe that's been in my big green cookbook since the very first day.  A recipe that I love to bring to cookouts and picnics.  That is great because just when you think it looks and will taste just like normal potato salad, that is when the vinegar and the mustard hit you.  That's right, a potato salad with no mayonnaise.  Another reason why it's perfect for cookouts and picnics.

I discovered this the summer I lived in Providence and made it for a fourth of July party, where might I say, it was devoured with rave reviews.  And it really isn't that much of a hassle, probably because I cheat in several places.  The recipe calls for brown mustard seeds and I'm too lazy to do a special shopping trip for another new bottle of spice.  The recipe calls to peel the potatoes after you boil them, I cut them up and if the skins fall off, they fall off.  And if not, they go into the bowl.  I tell myself they add some much needed color.  And today, laziness of all lazinesses, I used Costco bacon bits instead of making crumbles from fresh bacon.  In my defense, they are shockingly yummy and are made from "100% Real Bacon" that's been "Naturally Smoked".  Can you blame me?

It was a cookout with some amazing burgers (thank you Mark), corn on the cob, German Potato Salad and lots of sun.  And all that equals a full, happy stomach and a nice little tan.  Happy Summer Ya'll!

German Potato Salad
From My Big Green Cookbook

2 1/2 lbs. red potatoes
1/4 lb. bacon, cut into small pieces (I used a little less than a cup of my crumbled goodness...)
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 c. cider vinegar
1/4 c. water
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. brown mustard seeds
1 tsp. mustard (I just doubled this and dumped the seeds)
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped (opps, I dumped this too!!)
Paprika, to taste

Place potatoes in large saucepan.  If some are much larger, cut so all are similarly sized.  Add enough water to boil.  Bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce hear and simmer, uncovered, 20 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are fork-tender (don't over cook).  Drain completely and let potatoes cool.  Peel potatoes (hehe...) and cut into 1/4-inch pieces.

While potatoes are cooking, cook bacon in medium skillet over medium heat until crisp.  Remove from pan with slotted spoon.  Crumble and set aside.

In same pan, add onion and cook in bacon drippings until tender.

Combine vinegar, water, sugar, salt, mustard seeds and mustard and whisk together.  Put potatoes, bacon, onion in large bowl.  Pour dressing over and toss until well coated.  Garnish with parsley and sprinkle with paprika.  Serve hot or cold (yum... warm...)

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