God bless my Auntie Linda. From my earliest memory, there was only one time that I looked forward to potato salad: when hers were the hands that made it.
After we moved from the Pacific Northwest, I had a potato salad sized hole in my heart. This hole has only been filled the few times we went back home and there happened to be a cookout or holiday meal where my Auntie would be present. In other words, in nine years I have only been able to enjoy my Auntie’s potato salad a handful of times!
On Father’s Day weekend, it dawned on me that I could just call her for the recipe! Mind you, if you can cook or have experienced food from anyone who put their foot in it, you know that “recipe” is a loose term, and there will be a LOT of winging it by taste and by eye.
When I called my Auntie, she began with vagueness. “You know, cook ’em til they’re done” and “put the amount you like”. I had to stop her and say, “NO. I want to know how to do it the way YOU like it!” and then she let loose. “You better not be trying to use that healthy mayo, either. The cheap kind!” and “Use a cup of mayo…. Actually about half the jar.. Girl, you know, like you broke your wrist!” And to my surprise, a couple of hours after our convo was over, I picked up my phone to this text:
It’s the use of emojis for me 😂😂😂
After I made the salad (of course it wasn’t exactly like hers but it was CLOSE) I called to ask a few more questions before I put it on the blog. And as she answered, she gave this potato salad a couple more names:
“You could call it ‘Drunken Potato Salad’… like you’re drunk and you put everything in it. Or ‘Tavern Potato Salad.’ You know, some people make a nice little potato salad like you’re having a tea party. This ain’t it.” That one took me out!
Anyway, she went on to tell me that after her baby brother (my dad who passed away December 2019) tasted her potato salad for the first time, from then on it was always his request.
I am happy to carry on the legacy. This “Broke Wrist Drunken Tavern Potato Salad” will be at every cookout, holiday and birthday from here on out.
- I normally try to modify almost everything I do to be paleo… but after Auntie Linda said I wasn’t allowed to use healthy mayo, I couldn’t dishonor her like that!
- She only uses Farman’s Original Dill Pickles, but apparently they are only available in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Use whatever old fashioned brand of dill pickles you can find.
- She says to use “cheap mayo.” She’s talking Best Foods (West Coast) or Hellman’s (elsewhere) and if you use Miracle Whip, you will get a whole entire side eye from Auntie Linda. Resist that sandwich spread, sis!
- And finally, the potatoes. You boil them whole WITH the skin on. In Auntie Linda’s words, otherwise they’ll be grainy and “waterlogged instead of creamy.” And if you want this salad to be like hers, you have to boil them forever. Like 35-40 minutes or until they are ALMOST mashed potato soft.
Without further ado, here’s the “recipe”:
Auntie Linda’s Broke Wrist Potato Salad
What you’ll need:
- 8 large russet potatoes. Auntie Linda said “not the kind with the thin skin.” Gotta be russet.
- 2 large Farman’s Genuine Dill pickles, diced small
- 1 cup dill pickle juice
- 2 heaping tablespoons of honey mustard (Auntie Linda likes Beaver Honey Mustard)
- 2 cups mayo (like she said, the cheap kind!)
- 5 eggs- hard boiled. 3 chopped, 2 sliced and reserved for garnish
- 2 celery stalks, diced small
- 1 handful of celery leaves, chopped
- 1 half green bell pepper, diced small
- 1 half red bell pepper, diced small
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- Seasoning salt to taste (Auntie Linda said she is GENEROUS with it. She likes Johnnies or Lawery’s) you could start with a couple of teaspoons and add to taste but she uses more like a tablespoon (well….I think, based on her description).
- Black pepper to taste
- Optional garnish: sliced black olives, gerkin pickles, chopped green onions, sliced hard boiled eggs.
- Wash and scrub potatoes clean and place in a large stock pot. Cover with cold water and turn heat to high. Boil for 35-40 minutes until almost “mashed consistency.” If the boiling is rolling to where the skin is getting knocked off, reduce to slightly lower heat to keep skin intact.
- Meanwhile, chop and measure out all of your ingredients.
- Drain and cool the potatoes, peel, then chop into ½ inch cubes. Place back in the stock pot.
- Add the pickle juice to potatoes, and stir to loosen them up for easy addition of the rest of the ingredients.
- Add all of your other ingredients, leaving the sliced eggs and paprika. Mix well.
- Pour potato salad into a large serving bowl or baking dish. Lay sliced eggs on top and sprinkle with paprika. Add any other garnishes you want to add!
I hope you enjoy this recipe and please tag me in stories when you make it- I want to show my Auntie Linda how much of an impact she’s having!