So, the other day it hit somewhere in the mid-80s and it was not even mid-March! I now this kind of weather should make me more globally concerned, but I couldn’t help myself. Aaron and I went out and got a new mini charcoal grill and all the fixings for a “summer” dinner: brats, leeks and apples for a ridiculous brat topper (will post later), watermelon (note: March is NOT watermelon season…blech!), strawberries and potatoes for potato salad. Growing up, potato salad in my family consisted of boiled and chopped up potatoes, hard boiled eggs, paprika and more Miracle Whip then I care to remember. It was all very one note, made me kind of hate potato salad and honestly who wants to shove their faces with mayonnaise in hot weather? So, I went on a search for a new potato salad, and I found one that revolutionized my views on what I now consider a delightful side-dish.
This recipe has only natural potato creaminess to it, an amazing acidic bite and layers of flavor. I found this gem in an America’s Test Kitchen Cooking for Two Magazine. I was immediately drawn to it because it called for cornichons – tiny little tart pickles and I adore pickles! I found true cornichons at Trader Joes. You could also likely use gerkins as long as they are the tart and not the sweet kind. As for the rest of the recipe, I changed the amounts of some of the ingredients here and there, but stay true to the flavor profile. This potato salad is beyond good and I think suits hot weather far more than my traditional family version. Enjoy!
Austrian-Style Potato Salad
Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen
1 ¾ lbs potatoes – peeled and cut into quarter or smaller depending on size (I like to use the little bag of mixed potatoes from Trader Joes)
1 cup chicken (or veggie) broth
1 cup water
3 tablespoons vinegar (I have use distilled as well as red wine vinegar, and both were fine)
2 teaspoons sugar
Salt and Pepper to taste
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard – I use seeded since those seeds give a nice pop
10 cornichons, minced
2 shallots, minced
3 tablespoons fresh chives, minced
1. Put potatoes, broth, water, 1 ½ tablespoons vinegar, sugar and ¾ teaspoon salt in a large skilled and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat, cover the skillet and cook until potatoes are tender but not falling about – about 15-20 minutes.
2. Uncover the pot and cook another two minutes until the cooking liquid thickens up.
3. With a slotted spoon remove half of the potatoes and put them in a bowl. With a potato masher, mash up those potatoes good! Add half a cup of the cooking liquid left in the skillet, 1 ½ tablespoons vinegar, oil and Dijon mustard to the mashed potatoes and combine.
4. Fold in remaining potato chunks, cornichons, shallots and chives.
Enjoy this delicious and light potato salad!