Thursday, June 28, 2012

Oughtabe Award-Winning Potato Salad

Did you know the 4th of July is next week? I hadn't realized that until this morning when I was talking to my aunt who was all "don't forget to bring a pair of khaki shorts and a white t-shirt for the family photo." I was all "what?" And she was all "at the island next week!" Crap. Right. I'm going to South Padre Island to hang out with family and a few teacher friends who will coincidentally be there as well. Should be a rockin' time, but I was under the impression that I had a few weeks to go, but I guess not. Not that I'm complaining. One of my friends has described my most hilarious cousin as a caricature of me. Basically at these things my family enjoys getting drunk and having fun. And, well, I can't blame them. 

In any case, my aunt is one of the best cooks I've ever met. Like most people, she doesn't venture into many exotic cuisines or have the desire to learn to make Sausage and Mayonaise and those types of things like I do, but in terms of sheer skill, line up 100 people with identical ingredients and equipment and I'd be shocked if she wasn't the best. For as long as I can remember her Potato Salad has been her raison d'etre. It's quite simply phenomenal. I've watched her make it, though not yet going so far as to put anything in writing. For some reason or another I got a craving for this stuff, and unwilling to wait a week to see my family (hopefully her Potato Salad will be there), I set out to do it myself. Which is why I had to make some Mayo yesterday.

Now it's been a good half year or more (I can't remember if we had her Potato Salad at our Christmas dinner- like I said, we like to drink...) since I last had her stuff, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that mine is a very, very close second. It's very different from hers; uses different Mayo, has Leeks, and is full of Dill, but it's terrific. I'm sure that the winning ingredient here is the Mayo. I can't stress how much better my stuff is than what you can get at Walmart and Kroger. If you have a food processor, check out yesterday's post and make it. 

Now without further ado, here's my Oughtabe Award-Winning Potato Salad

Potato Salad

3 White Boiling Potatoes
2 Giant Leeks
1 Red Onion
1 Bunch Dill
1-2 Large Spoonfuls Homemade Mayonaise 
1 Small Spoonful Horseradish* 
1 Bunch Fresh Dill
Small Chunk Butter
Salt and Pepper

Boil the Potatoes until cooked. A knife should easily be able to cut them, but they shouldn't be so cooked that they're crumbly or falling apart. While the Potatoes are boiling, slice and cook the Leeks and dice and cook the Red Onion in a saucepan in a little bit of Butter. Leave them barely crunchy. This should be a very fresh tasting salad and overly cooked Veggies give the perception of old store-bought crap. Once the Potatoes are cooked, cool them in cold Water and slice them into medium sized chunks. Spoon Mayo over them and mix until all chunks are more or less covered. I prefer not to overdo the Mayo, but this is obviously a personal preference. I add the Leeks and Onions after the Mayo for the sole reason that I don't want the Veggies completely covered. I want to see their color and I want this to be more "salad" than a vessel for Mayo. Finally, finely chop the Dill and mix it in. Salt and Pepper to taste, as usual, though I didn't feel the need to do this in mine.  

*See how I made Mayo and prepared the Horseradish in yesterday's post! 

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