My Grandmother’s Potato Salad

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My Grandmother’s Potato Salad

My grandmother’s name was Ardath Harter, so I called her “Grama” Harter (she would write her surname with a heart!).

I only remember her making three foods. For me, when I visited her house, she’d make a grilled cheese with dill pickles on the side and a cup of tea in a gold teacup. For dinner, she would make Pennsylvania Dutch Ham, String Bean, and Potato Soup, and for picnics, she’d make her potato salad.

This potato salad recipe is sized for a crowd and more closely resembles a German potato salad than a typical American one. She was adamant that the hot dressing be poured over the potatoes while they are still hot. I am adamant that you make it a day in advance—it needs to absorb the dressing overnight in the fridge.

It should have a yellow hue when done and taste like my family’s old-time picnics.

Original Grandmother's Recipe

My Grandmother’s Potato Salad

Salad Ingredients:

  • 4 pounds potatoes
  • ½ cup diced onion
  • 2 cups diced celery
  • 4 diced hard-boiled eggs
  • Fresh dill, chopped

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 Tablespoons prepared brown mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¾ cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1¼ cups milk
  • Salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Boil the potatoes whole and “cooked in jackets” (i.e.: with the skin on). This keeps them from getting mushy.
  2. In a saucepan, combine the dressing ingredients and bring to a boil before bringing the mixture down to medium heat and stirring until thick.
  3. Take the potatoes out and cut them down to size (I keep the skins on, but you don’t have to). Add in the celery, onion, and three of the hard-boiled eggs.
  4. Toss with the dressing and leave in the fridge overnight.
  5. Right before serving, add the final hard-boiled egg (for fresh color) and chopped dill.

DISCLAIMER: Feeding yourself and your children organic foods may cause extreme health, healing, and happiness.

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9 Responses to My Grandmother’s Potato Salad

  1. Donna in Delaware May 13, 2015 at 7:27 am #

    Great! I love a good warm German potato salad. Thank you. I am sure that this taste wonderful. Been looking for a recipe that taste similar to the potato salad I had in Frankfurt 2 years ago at the Steigenberger Hotel. It was excellent! Can’t wait to try it. It is good to see that you have something of hers (her own handwriting maybe?) that was passed down, that you can pass on to your daughters. Thanks again for another good Pennsylvania Dutch recipe.

  2. Alice Green May 13, 2015 at 2:59 pm #

    I’ve never seen that saying up around the picture of the couple. “Kissin wears out, cookin don’t”…. I wonder if that is true. Did you ever ask your Grama if that was true? Since she signed her last name with a Heart, I’m thinking maybe it didn’t apply to her.

  3. Maria Luci May 13, 2015 at 3:53 pm #

    This sounds yummy! My father makes a delicious German Potato Salad as well… nothing like potato salad at a picnic!

  4. maria (farm country kitchen) May 15, 2015 at 1:02 pm #

    My grandmother was widowed in her early 50’s and as far as I know never dated anyone after that. She never learned to drive, so she was rather house bound. But I loved her dearly! She knitted and needle pointed!

  5. Alice Green May 15, 2015 at 1:15 pm #

    In my world, there is no one better then a Grandmother. Without my Grandmothers I wouldn’t have known what it was like to be loved as a child. They made me feel loved and I know that was what saved me and made me want to love back. I’m so glad you had a wonderful Grandmother, too!

  6. Alexa Fleckenstein M.D. May 20, 2015 at 12:47 pm #

    Nothing better than a potato salad at a picnic or a s a potluck (my sauerkraut with pineapple and organic wieners comes in second!).

    But do we still need recipes that call for half a cup of sugar?? Make your own mayonnaise or just pour over a bit olive oil and mustard (or vinegar). Potatoes shouldn’t taste sweet! They should taste earthy, like potatoes!

    Alexa Fleckenstein M.D., physician, author (Rodale author, that is).

  7. MikeProko June 3, 2015 at 9:11 pm #

    Mmmm! Sounds delish. Can’t wait to try it out.
    Thanks,
    mlp

  8. Sylvia Lansberg July 1, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    I am going to make this in honor of my Mennonite Pennsylvania Dutch grandmother, for whom I am named. Sounds delish without mayonnaise. As far as the sugar is concerned, I would eliminate it and use some pickle juice (sweet – perhaps the sugarless Mt. Olive brand) and maybe add some crumbled bacon. My dear daughter-in-law, who will not eat anything with mayo, will love this!

  9. Dolly Graham December 13, 2015 at 11:04 pm #

    With 4 pounds of potatoes, 4 eggs, 2 cups of celery, and half an onion, you will NOT taste a mere 1/2 cup of sugar.

    It is a flavor enhancer and is not a danger when used in such a reasonable portion.

    Sugar is a natural product and is necessary for a complete diet. To “demonize” it is not fair.

    Fat is good. Sugar is good. It is EXCESS that is a problem. And, just as too much fat, and too much sugar, and too much of anything is “bad,” so is TOO MUCH ZEALOTRY in the quest for perfection.

    When we go overboard, in a quest for “perfection” we can make errors, in the scheme of things. When someone is willing to “indict” a perfectly good product, in a quest for “perfection” we become zealots; sacrificing the good for the perfect. Zealotry, is dangerous, not smart.

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