There is something special about a country that celebrates its independence by gathering with friends and family. Backyard picnics and barbecuing burgers and hot dogs are time-honored, Fourth of July traditions I can fully stand behind. Over the years, I’ve come to accept that what my stateside friends consider potato salad will never be what I consider potato salad. I became the bearer of potato salad at picnics; which means, I gave out this recipe quite a bit. Making authentic, German-style potato salad is simple, as long as you follow each step in succession.
First, boil three or so pounds of whole potatoes—unpeeled. Use smaller potatoes or you’ll be boiling all day long. While they’re still warm, and here’s the key, peel the potatoes and toss them in a simple dressing that includes a generous amount of chicken stock*. Have patience. The potatoes will gradually soak up the stock to make a creamy sauce. And please, no mayonnaise!
Serves 6 to 8
3 pounds (about 7 to 8) small russet potatoes, 3 to 4 inches long, scrubbed
2 ½ teaspoons coarse sea or kosher salt, divided, more to taste
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ large onion, diced
2 meaty slices bacon, diced
2 teaspoons whole caraway seeds
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, more to taste
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
½ cup white wine vinegar
1 ¾ to 2 ¼ cups Chicken Stock* warm
*In Das Cookbook the recipe calls for homemade ham stock, chicken stock is a delicious substitute for people who need to use store bought stock.