Hello! Guest blogger Nona from The Happy Wag here. And I have a confession.
This is my ugly truth: I never liked potato salad when I was a kid.
I know. Summertime blasphemy!
It was probably because my mother’s version was really more like mashed potatoes with mustard and chives. I don’t like mashed potatoes (blasphemy again, I know); I prefer baked or crispy fried potatoes.
My lack of love for tater salad always made me a one-off at most summer cookouts.
As I got older and more adept at cooking, I figured out a way to make potato salad that I really liked, and it is now a year-round favorite at my house.
This is a recipe for baked potato salad that I made up from the inspiration of a few other similar recipes. That’s a nice way to say I shamelessly stole parts of it from a variety of sources, including a Nashville restaurant and a few celebrity chefs on Food Network.
Below is my recipe for baked potato salad. Tell us how you like your potato salad.
Individuality RULES: I do not follow directions to the letter, so feel free to adjust this according to taste. A little more of this, a little less of that, no-way-I’m-putting-that-in-because-my-kids-will-never-eat-it, whatever.
This makes enough for the average family of four. Double or triple if you are taking it for a cookout there will be more people who love potato salad (that would be almost every cookout I’ve ever attended.)
* Pound or so of wee potatoes (redskins or Yukon gold or a combination) sliced into 1-inch chunks.
* 4 ounces of sour cream (or more if you like your salad more creamy)
* Handful of chives, chopped into tiny bits (I use kitchen scissors, EZPZ)
* Half cup of bacon bits (real bacon is best; you can get it in the salad dressing aisle if you can’t fry your own)
* Half cup of shredded cheese (I use Colby Jack, you use what you like. Sharp cheddar would be awesome)
* Three tablespoons (or more to taste) of Kraft’s Light Creamy Caesar salad dressing (or make your own, Martha Stewart)
* Tablespoon of raw onions, chopped into teeny tiny bits
* Teaspoon of dried oregano
* Teaspoon of garlic powder
Put the chopped taters into a pot of lightly salted water and bring to a boil. Let them boil for about two minutes or so, until they are just fork tender. Strain and pat dry. Place them on a non-stick baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Toss them with the chopped onion and sprinkle with the oregano and garlic powder.
I don’t salt the potatoes because they’ve already had a salty bath and are going to get their groove on with the salty bacon later and too much salt makes my feet puffy. I may still want to be able to wear shoes later.
Spray a fine mist of cooking spray over the potatoes (it’s like tanning spray for taters.)
Put the tray under the broiler for about five to eight minutes. Keep an eye on them to prevent burning, which happens about a half a millisecond after they get to the perfect golden color. Remove from the broiler and let the potatoes cool.
RESIST the urge to eat them all right then. (Actually, if you just want to eat them right then, these are awesome roasted potatoes. Add a little salt and pepper and have at it.)
Assuming you resisted and still want to make tater salad, continue reading:
In a big mixing bowl, whisk the sour cream and the salad dressing together (the salad dressing adds great flavor to the sour cream) and then blend in the chives, the bacon bits and the cheese. Taste it. (Don’t eat it all! Just a taste.) Add more of anything you think it needs.
Once the taters are totally cool, add them to the dressing/cheese/bacon concoction.
Taste again. Need more cheese? More sour cream or bacon? Toss it in.
Cover and keep chilled until it’s time to share with others. Enjoy.