German Potato Salad

Potato SaladThis is one of my all-time favorite choices for a potluck or picnic.  As long as your audience will eat pork products, this will be a massive hit.  Thanks to America’s Test Kitchen for this recipe.  If possible, try to use a traditional cast-iron skillet, which will allow salty bits of charred bacon and caramelized onions to enhance the flavor.

2 pounds medium red or Yukon Gold potatoes (1-2 inches in diameter), unpeeled, scrubbed, and halved if smaller or quartered if larger
Salt to taste
8 ounces bacon (about 8 strips), cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
1 medium onion, chopped fine (about 1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 tablespoon whole-grain German-style mustard
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves  

1. Place potatoes, 1 tablespoon salt, and water to cover in large saucepan or Dutch oven, bring to boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium and simmer until potatoes are tender (thin-bladed paring knife can be slipped into and out of potatoes with little resistance), about 10 minutes. Reserve 1/2 cup potato cooking water, then drain potatoes; return potatoes to pot and cover to keep warm.

2. While potatoes are cooking, fry bacon in large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown and crisp, about 5 minutes. With slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towel-lined plate; pour off all but 1/4 cup bacon grease.

3. Add onion to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally over medium heat until softened and beginning to brown, about 4 minutes.

4. Stir in sugar until dissolved, about 30 seconds.

5. Add vinegar and reserved potato cooking water; bring to simmer and cook until mixture is reduced to about 1 cup, about 3 minutes.

6. Remove from heat; whisk in mustard and pepper.

7. Add potatoes, parsley, and bacon to skillet and toss to combine; adjust seasoning with salt. Transfer to serving bowl and serve.

Serves 6 to 8 as a side dish


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