If you love a good potato salad, you will love my late Mom’s Potato Salad. It has a wonderful flavour, one that has made it an oft-requested addition to potlucks and barbecues over the years. My late parents loved to entertain, and Mom used to make this amazing potato salad for parties and buffets. Everyone always used to ask for the recipe, and she was happy to share.
An Unconventional Method for Delicious Results
I think the reason Mom’s Potato Salad was, and is, so popular is the unconventional method of preparation. The whole secret of Mom’s delicious recipe is to make sure you start when the potatoes are still warm, marinate them, and let them sit in the fridge overnight. However recently I’ve found that you can also marinate the potatoes cold, provided you can leave them for at least an hour to sit.
Potato Salad is a Great Way to Love Your Leftovers
This is a great way to use up leftover new or baby potatoes, but it is also well worth cooking fresh potatoes just to make the salad. Be sure you do not scrub all the skin off the potatoes before cooking them. The salad is nicer if there is some skin still left, and it is better for you too. This is why I recommend using small new or baby potatoes. They work much better than larger potatoes in this recipe.
When I’m planning to use leftover potatoes, I just separate out the potatoes I need for dinner. Then I put the remaining ones in a bowl for the salad. It’s the work of moments to cut them up and dress them before popping them in the fridge to marinate. If you are rushed, just refrigerate the potatoes whole overnight. As I mentioned before, I’ve now discovered you can cut them up and marinate them in the morning.
A Versatile, Easy Recipe You Can Adapt To Suit Your Family
Use whatever salad vegetables you like. Like many good home cooks, Mom was always a bit vague about the quantities. You can add an extra bell pepper if you like, or some chopped radishes, whatever you fancy really.
Use good mayonnaise, whatever your favourite brand is. I don’t know why, but my Mom hated Hellmann’s mayonnaise. She much preferred Miracle Whip. I can’t get Miracle Whip here in the UK but honestly, I’m a huge fan of Hellmann’s Lighter Than Light Mayonnaise. Mom would not approve, but I think she’d understand. By all means use your favourite kind of dressing, the flavour of the mayonnaise really does affect the flavour of the salad.
If you work on a spoonful of potato salad each, this recipe will serve quite a few people. It’s worth making extra though, as people always seem to come back for seconds. Anyway, leftovers are no bad thing!
I often serve potato salad as part of a salad supper, or as a side dish with hot or cold main dishes. It always makes me smile and think of my Mom when my friends ask for the recipe – and of course, I’m happy to share too.
Potato Salad – Printable Recipe
- For the evening or morning before:-
- A medium bowlful of cooked new or baby potatoes, preferably with skin left on
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- 3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
- For the next day:-
- 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
- ½ cup finely chopped celery
- 4 or 5 spring onions (scallions), finely chopped
- About ½ cup of mayonnaise (you may need more or less)
- ¼ teaspoon celery salt
- about ¼ teaspoon pepper, to taste
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes or chopped fresh parsley plus more for garnish
- Drain the cooked potatoes well and place in a bowl. Set aside until they are cool enough to handle.
- Cut any really large ones in smaller pieces, just right for picking up with a fork.
- Pour over the olive oil and vinegar and toss the potatoes gently to coat well. It really depends on how many potatoes you have how much oil and vinegar you will need, but it is definitely okay to have some oil and vinegar left in the bottom of the bowl for the potatoes to marinate in. If you have a lot of potatoes, double the oil and vinegar quantities.
- Cool to room temperature and pop in the fridge. If you happen to open the fridge for any reason, just give them a gentle toss.
- In the morning or after an hour or so, take the potatoes from the fridge and drain off any excess oil and vinegar. You still want the potatoes covered in the oil and vinegar mixture, but you don’t want any left in the bottom of the bowl.
- Transfer the potatoes in a large mixing bowl.
- Finely chop up the salad vegetables you are using.
- Add the vegetables to the potatoes along celery salt, pepper and parsley flakes.
- Gradually add the mayonnaise to coat the potatoes and vegetables. You want the potatoes well coated but you don’t want to overdress the salad as it already has a nice coating of the marinade.
- Stir the salad very gently to avoid breaking up the potatoes too much. When you are happy with the consistency of the salad, taste it and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
- Cover and chill until ready to serve. Garnish with more parsley before serving if desired.
- The salad will keep for a good 24 hours from this point.