28 October 2017

Hedy's German Potato Salad

Simple flavors combine to make a warm and tart take on potatoes, onions, ham, and parsley ... German Potato Salad. SB and I are just back from a visit with German friends and I'm feeling the nostalgia for all that German brauhaus food that we enjoyed while touring. Every small village has its little pub/restaurant that serves the local specialties and potato salads come a few different ways.

This Bavarian salad gets layered and drizzled with a dressing made of beef broth, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper ... it's pretty to look at until it gets all glopped together. We had it with beer braised bratwurst, sauerkraut, chunks of artisan bread, German mustard that was extra spicy, and plenty of pictures of our German adventures.

Making the salad is a cinch. Boil potatoes with the skins on. Peel them when you can handle them and slice them into nice thick slices. Chunk the slices and layer in a shallow serving bowl with roughly chopped onion, and crisp bits of speck or bacon. On each layer drizzle a bit of the dressing, ending with the dressing and a healthy sprinkling of fresh chopped parsley and chives. When you serve the salad warm or room temperature, spoon some of the dressing from the bottom of the serving bowl over the salad once you've placed the serving on the dinner plate. Delish! Some folks also add chopped gherkin pickles to this salad too, but we preferred to crunch the pickles on the side with our brats and bread.

Here's how I made the salad.

Hedy's Warmer Bayerischer Kartoffelsalat

Serves 4

2 1/2 lbs potatoes, washed but not peeled or cut up (I used red skin potatoes)
1/2 lb. smoked sliced bacon, sliced into 1/2 inch lardons
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
a slight 1/2 c. bacon drippings (if you don't get enough dripping from cooking the bacon, round out the measure with some canola oil)
1/2 c. strong beef broth
1 tbsp. cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. sharp German mustard
a generous handful of chopped parsley and chives

Making the Salad:

1. Bring the potatoes to a gentle simmer and cook for about 40 minutes or until knife tender/firm. Remove from the stove, drain and let cool a bit.

2. While the potatoes cook, crisp the bacon pieces in a fry pan over moderate heat. When they are brown and crisp, drain the bits on a paper towel and scrap the cracklings and fat into a measuring cup. 
If you don't have the total measure, bring the measure up with some canola oil. 

3. Measure the beef broth, bacon drippings, vinegar, salt and pepper, and mustard into a bowl and whisk to make a dressing. Set aside.

4. Chop the onion and set aside, chop the herbs and set aside.

5. Peel the potatoes and slice them relatively thickly.

6. Place a layer of chopped and chunked potatoes, onion and bacon in a shallow serving bowl. Drizzle with a quarter of the dressing.

7. Peel more potatoes and layer again with the onions and bacon. Drizzle the second layer with dressing. 

8. Peel the last of the potatoes and make one more layer with the onions and bacon. Sprinkle on the herbs and drizzle the last of the dressing, making sure to moisten all the potatoes so they don't darken.

9. Serve the salad warm or let it go to room temperature and serve.

Guten appetit !!!

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