Old Fashioned Creamy Potato Salad

Old Fashioned Creamy Potato Salad

Don’t like potato salad? I hear that a lot.

Until people try this potato salad.

No, seriously.

My husband won’t eat potato salad unless it’s THIS potato salad. AND he’ll eat leftovers. (He’s not typically a “leftovers” kinda guy, unless it’s steak or his mother’s enchiladas.)

Starting in spring, this particular potato salad is requested at every family gathering. Yes, every. Friends that have tried it? Same request.

potato salad, creamy potato salad, picnic food, potato salad recipes

What is it about this recipe that’s so good? Well, it reminds me of the potato salad my grandmother used to make. Kind of southern, kind of classic. Creamy with a little tang from the mustard, perfect compliment to BBQ, sandwiches, or any other picnic food. Give it a whirl – it’s super simple, and you can make it the day before. It’s better if you make it a day ahead. Fabulous!

Old Fashioned Creamy Potato Salad
 
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Author:
Serves: 6 to 8
Ingredients
  • 8 medium potatoes, cubed (red skin are my favorite, but any kind will do)
  • 6 large eggs, hard boiled* and diced
  • 6 green onions, diced
  • 1¼ cup real mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (or any kind you have on hand)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon parsley (fresh or dried)
Instructions
  1. Put the potatoes in a large pot (I leave skins on), fill with water, set over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, continue boiling for 15 minutes. Drain, then rinse with cold water for 30 seconds. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients. Add the potatoes, stirring to coat completely. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving (overnight’s better). Makes enough for 6-8 side dish servings.
  3. *HARD BOILED EGGS: Fill a medium sauce pot half-way with water, add the eggs, and set over high heat. Just before the water comes to a hard boil, reduce heat and gently boil (keep the eggs from bouncing around too much) for 7 minutes. Drain and let cool before peeling.

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Potatoes have to be one of my favorite foods: versatile, comforting, satisfying, and cheap. I mash them, roast them, fry them, make soup out of them, but I’ve only ever been able to create a mediocre gratin.

I’m not sure why – the concept is simple enough, thin potatoes with a cream mixture poured over top then baked to perfection. Except, sometimes the cream mixture breaks, or the potatoes don’t quite get soft enough. Bleh.

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Last night, however, I finally nailed it! All it took was marrying the concept of parboiling with the cheese sauce I use for the base to my potato soup. Et voilà!

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes
 
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Author:
Serves: 4 to 6
Ingredients
  • 8 small to medium potatoes (white or red-skinned work best)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter + a little to butter your baking dish
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt + extra for sprinkling
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper + extra for sprinkling
  • 3 cups whole milk or half-and-half (don’t go with less fat)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese + extra for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Butter a 2.5 quart baking dish and set aside.
  2. Fill a large pot with water. Peel the potatoes and slice them super thin – if you have a mandolin, now’s the time to get it out! Put the sliced potatoes into the pot, add the salt, and bring to a boil. Cook for three minutes, drain the potatoes, and run them under cold water for 1 minute to halt the cooking process.
  3. Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onions, ¼ teaspoon pepper, 1 teaspoon garlic salt, and 1 tablespoon parsley. Sauté until they become translucent, about 8 minutes.
  4. Add the flour, stir to combine, then let the mixture cook for an additional 1 to 2 minutes (this helps take the flour taste out). Whisk in the milk, turn heat to medium-high, and continue whisking until the mixture starts to thicken and bubble. Remove from heat. Stir in the cheese until it’s smooth, then set aside while you get the potatoes ready.
  5. Place a layer of potato slices in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle garlic salt, parsley and pepper on top, then spread ¼ cup of the cheese sauce over the potatoes. Add another layer of potatoes, sprinkle garlic salt, parsley and pepper on top, then add ¼ cup of cheese sauce. Repeat the steps until your potatoes are gone, or you reach 1″ below the top of your baking dish. Pour the remaining cheese sauce on top, and sprinkle with cheddar cheese.
  6. Bake covered for 40 minutes, then uncover and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes before plating.
  7. Makes enough for 6-8 servings (and some seriously yummy leftovers!)
 

Crispy Tender Roast Potatoes

Crispy Roast Potatoes

Does this ever happen to you?

You’re staring at the pantry, wondering what sort of side to make with your steak, or chicken, or whatever, when you notice a half-gone bag of almost soft potatoes sitting on the bottom shelf.

Whoops. A savvy grocery shopper would’ve meal planned well enough to have the potatoes long since used.

Me? I make a last minute meal plan and turn the bag of almost gone potatoes and 6 other ingredients into delicious….

Crispy Tender Roast Potatoes
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 6 medium potatoes, skins on and cut into 1″ cubes (give or take)
  • 2 medium onions, sliced in large chunks
  • 4 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 tablespoon dried herbs (basil, Italian seasoning, oregano, or whatever you have on hand)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup olive oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Combine all the ingredients, making sure the potatoes are coated well. Spread them out into a single layer on a 13×9″ baking sheet.
  3. Roast for 20 minutes, give the potatoes a stir, and continue roasting for an additional 20 minutes, or until they are golden with crispy edges.

French Farmhouse Potatoes

I give Rachel Ray the credit for bringing this recipe to my attention during one of her holiday specials. But the true credit for the recipe goes to famous French chef Jacques Pépin, who originally made this potato side a favorite on many family tables years ago. Rumor has it, this particular recipe was made by his French grandmother on a daily basis, served with dinner and loved by all.

There are only a few simple ingredients needed for what ends up becoming soft, rich and creamy potato goodness. And while the process is not difficult, it does take about 35-40 minutes from start to finish. Good news is, none of the steps requires much maintenance – complete one, and then go on about your business until it’s time for the next step (I used my kitchen timer to help remind me when it was time to come back).

One word of caution, the last 5 or so minutes of the process is what makes these potatoes so delicious. The last five minutes also leaves a really hard crust on the bottom of your pan, like a real soaker of a crust. So, if you have a deep nonstick pan you may want to use it; however, you’ll probably give up some of the dark brown seary crispiness. I have a nice heavy bottom stainless deep skillet, and it washes up nicely after an overnight soak, so that’s what I used.

French Farmhouse Potatoes

Ingredients
6-8 Yukon gold or red potatoes (small to medium size)
2 14.5 ounce cans chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons butter

Directions

Place the potatoes in a deep skillet, add the chicken broth, pepper, and butter. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and cover for 15 minutes (or until the potatoes are fork-tender).

Remove the lid, and increase heat to medium-high. Keep the chicken broth at a hard simmer until almost all the broth has evaporated, about 15 minutes. Reduce heat back down to medium.

With a flat-bottomed glass, gently push down on each of the potatoes until they just crack – you don’t want to smash them. Let cook for 3-5 minutes on each side so that the skin gets brown and crispy. Remove from heat and serve hot – think mashed potatoes with a light crispy coating. Yum!

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