Recipe: German Potato Salad (Warmer Kartoffelsalat)

German Potato Salad

German Potato Salad

The Culinary Institute of Chicago published the original version of this potato salad recipe in a book called “New World Encyclopedia of Cooking” in 1972, as well as a pamphlet of German standbys. I’ve modified it slightly for modern tastes. 8-10 servings.

3 lbs potatoes, preferably Yukon gold or another variety that won’t fall apart when boiled
1 ½ c onions, chopped
2 T bacon grease
2 T olive oil
½ c cider vinegar
2 T sugar
2 t salt
¾ t MSG (optional)*
¼ t ground black pepper
½ c celery with leaves or parsley, finally chopped*
2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Method: Peel the potatoes and boil them in salted water until they are just tender, about 20 minutes; drain and return to the warm pot, where they will absorb any remaining liquid. Saute the onions in the oils till translucent then add all other ingredients except celery or parsley. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle but still warm, slice them coarsely back into their cooking pot. Add the celery/parsley, mix, then add the onions and liquid and stir to mix thoroughly. Allow to rest at least 1 hour so potatoes can absorb the sauce. Crumble the bacon over the top before serving, preferably warm or at room temperature.

*I tried the recipe with and without the MSG and it definitely adds a flavor dimension, but the dish is fine without it. The greenery is non-traditional but I wanted to relieve the monochrome nature of the dish.

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