Memorial Day weekend is the beginning of our mental summer season, which doesn’t always coincide with the weather. Usually we celebrate our daughter’s birthday on this weekend. Her choice of menu is usually barbecued Copper River salmon, mom’s potato salad, a spring vegetable, such as roasted asparagus, snow-capped rolls, and strawberry shortcake. I began making my first potato salad about 45+ years ago and over the years this recipe evolved. It is a family favorite. I hope you like it too.
This potato salad gets many compliments and people often request the recipe. I do almost all of my measuring by eye and taste. I have listed the approximate ingredient amounts, but feel free to increase or decrease any of the amounts to please your own palate. The yellow mustard, celery salt, pickle, and pickle juice help to make this potato salad very tasty.
I use at least twice the amount of eggs as I do potatoes. If I use 7 or 8 potatoes, I will cook 16-20 eggs, depending on the size of the eggs and the size of the potatoes. If you need a larger salad, just figure a potato per person + 1 or 2 extra for good measure; then add at least twice as many eggs as the potatoes. You’ll increase the amounts of all other ingredients too, but you’ll do it by measurement, taste, and/or look.
6-7 potatoes (large Yukon Gold potatoes or large red potatoes)
12-16 eggs, large
1-2 bunches green onions, finely cut
1-3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
1-2 teaspoon yellow mustard
1 teaspoon celery salt (or more)
1 large dill pickle, cut in small pieces
1-3 tablespoons pickle juice
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup or more of mayonnaise (approximate)
1. The night before or several hours before serving the salad, cook the potatoes until they are just cooked through, but still firm (do not overcook, as they tend to crumble). Cool the potatoes a bit before placing them in the refrigerator. Cool them thoroughly in the refrigerator. Keep there until 1-2 hours before serving the salad.
2. At the same time you cook the potatoes, also cook the eggs. Pull out your eggs about an hour before you plan to cook them, so they are close to room-temperature. Place the eggs in a pan in cool water. Heat and cook to gentle boiling. Then cover, turning the heat down to low for about 25 minutes (times may vary, depending on your stove; keep lid on without peeking). Once done, cool the eggs in cold water. Then put eggs in a bowl and place in the refrigerator until they are cold.
3. About 1-2 hours before serving the salad, begin peeling the eggs and the potatoes. Note: Peeling eggs can be done quickly by hitting each egg a couple times on the counter top and then rolling the egg between the palms of your hands a few times. Usually the skins will come off easily after this hand rolling takes place.
4. Cut the potatoes into large bites. Also slice the eggs in large pieces. If you want to save 1-2 eggs to decorate on top of the salad, then save them to cut in thin slices.,.
5. Place the cut up potatoes and eggs in a large bowl. Gently mix the two items together. Add the rest of the ingredients to the top of the egg/potato mixture in the bowl. Use the smaller amount of ingredients to begin. Stir everything together until it is well mixed. Then take a taste test.
6. Add more pickle, relish, mustard, celery salt, onion, pepper, etc. If the salad needs more liquid, add a combination of pickle juice and/or mayonnaise. If the potato salad seems a bit dry, I usually add dill pickle juice from the pickle jar.
7. Cover the salad bowl with a dish towel or some other covering. Place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it. Give it a new taste test. If it needs more salt, add celery salt; more liquid, more pickle juice; etc. I always ask someone else to take a bite and tell me if it needs any adjustments. Then, it’s off to eating!