Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Cook's Illustrated All-American Potato Salad

I made this vinegar potato salad yesterday and it was a success. It will be one of potato salad recipes forever now. It is much quicker to make than my non-vinegar salad. And it's perfect for a heat wave, which we are having now. Make it in the morning and it's perfect for supper.

Serves 4 to .6

Note that this recipe calls for celery seed, not celery salt; if only celery salt is available, use the same amount but omit the addition of salt in the dressing. When testing the potatoes for doneness, simply taste a piece; do not overcook the potatoes or they will become mealy and will break apart. The potatoes must be just warm, or even fully cooled, when you add the dressing. If you find the potato salad a little dry for your liking, add up to 2 tablespoons more mayonnaise.

Ingredients
2 pounds russet potatoes (3 to 4 medium), peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
table salt
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 medium rib celery , chopped fine (about 1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons minced red onion
3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
1/2 cup mayonnaise (see note)
3/4 teaspoon powdered mustard
3/4 teaspoon celery seed
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 large hard-cooked eggs , peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes (optional)

Instructions

1. Place potatoes in large saucepan and add water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to boil over medium-high heat; add 1 tablespoon salt, reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring once or twice, until potatoes are tender, about 8 minutes.

2. Drain potatoes and transfer to large bowl. Add vinegar and, using rubber spatula, toss gently to combine. Let stand until potatoes are just warm, about 20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, in small bowl, stir together celery, onion, pickle relish, mayonnaise, mustard powder, celery seed, parsley, pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Using rubber spatula, gently fold dressing and eggs, if using, into potatoes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour; serve. (Potato salad can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day.)

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