Then I married into a family of inspired potato salad makers. Multigenerational. It started with, “No one makes potato salad like grandma.” Then it was, “No one makes potato salad like mom.” Now it’s, “No one makes potato salad like Margaret”.
People ask her to bring it for picnics, barbeques, potlucks, and dinners. The bowl is usually empty before I have even a chance to load up on seconds. (Which is why I usually try to spoon out a bowlful from the fridge before it ever makes it to the table.)
Now, I’ve learned how to make it, too. It’s really quite simple. Just a few tricks to make it so extra special.
Start with potatoes and eggs.
Plenty of eggs. Like, one egg for every decent-sized potato. Hard boiled and peeled. (My last batch had 5 or 6 hefty Russets and 9 eggs.)
Potatoes peeled too. (Unless you’re using some of those really nice young garden-fresh white or yellow potatoes. Then, peeling them is optional and you get a nice rustic potato salad.) Secret #1: Don’t overcook the potatoes. They should be quite firm. (Otherwise you get mushy potato salad. Not good.)
Once they have cooled off, slice up the potatoes and eggs into a big bowl. Secret #2: I said slice them. The pieces should be quite large. (They’ll break up a bit when you stir all the ingredients up later, but you want that rustic consistency.)
Fold it all together with a big spoon. Gently. Don’t break up the potatoes too much.