The Gold Standard of Potato Salads

realpotatoI grew up on my mother’s potato salad. I figured that is how it was made.

When I was an adult, I was invited to friend’s homes for backyard picnics.

I took my spoonful of potato salad, sat down, and dug in.

I screamed, I spit, I howled, “What is this shit?”

Well,  okay, I exaggerate. I thought all those things in my mind.

What is this swill of potatoes, an obligatory egg, a rib of celery, vinegar and mayo with a dash of salt and pepper?

What it is not is potato salad.

Over the years, I’ve sophisticated Mother’s recipe a very little bit. This IS potato salad.


  • Six to eight potatoes (Yukon preferred), peeled, diced, and cooked in boiling salted water until just done.
  • An equal amount of eggs hard-boiled and peeled, chopped roughly
  • 2 ribs of celery chopped
  • 5 scallions, chopped, with plenty of the green part too
  • 6 radishes, sliced
  • 1/2 green, red or yellow sweet pepper
  • 6 strips bacon, fried and crumbled
  • 1/2 c diced dill pickle
  • 1/3 c sliced pimentoed olives

Put all together in a bowl (except the bacon)


  • 2/3 c of mayonnaise (home-made or Hellman’s preferred)
  • 2 TBSP ballpark mustard or dijon if you are really uppity.
  • 2 TBSP fresh parsley
  • 1/4 c juice from the pickle or olive jar
  • 1/2 TBSP freshly ground pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 c chives for garnish.

Whisk the dressing together, adjust for your taste, and pour over the potato mixture and fold in carefully. Mixture should be more dry than sloppy. This allows for leftovers that aren’t swimming in watery dressing. Before serving sprinkle with the bacon and chives.

Get ready to write out the recipe for all the requests. If you don’t get requests, you are hanging with the wrong people!

Serves at least 8.


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