My mother didn’t make German Potato Salad, but my grandmother did. Unlike most versions, hers went into the oven. I rather prefer the roasted version…the potatoes are a better texture and they brown up nicely. I suspect it was easier for her to toss the dish into the oven, along with whatever she might be roasting. My grandparents had nine children, her parents and a couple of nephews around their dinner table, so she was busy. If you prefer not to roast this dish, simply completely cook the potatoes in the water, until they are just done.
This version, has the “twist” of added apple. It is particularly delicious with pork, but we like it wish chicken, too. If you wish, omit the apple, but it really is a nice addition. On occasion, I have added Brussels sprouts. I cut them in half, and just toss them in with the apple and potatoes and continue with the recipe. I have, at times, sprinkled toasted walnuts over the finished dish. In summer, I sometimes roast the potatoes and apples on the BBQ. You can use a cast iron skillet, or wrap them in a double layer of foil. I think they cook more quickly on the BBQ. Options, my friend…options!
Twisted German Potato Salad
- 2 pounds small-ish red-skinned or yellow potatoes, unpeeled and quartered
- 2-3 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more as needed
- Water to cover (see NOTE)
- 1 cooking apple, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
- 6 slices good smoky bacon, 1/2-inch dice
- 1 medium red onion, finely diced (about 1 cup)
- 2 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar (I use a bit more)
- 1/4 teaspoon whole celery seed (optional)
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
- 1 1/2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon or German mustard
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
- 2 tablespoons minced chives
Place potatoes, 2 teaspoons salt, and water to cover, large; bring to boil over high heat. Simmer for 5 minutes; potatoes will not be tender. Drain and place in an oven-proof casserole dish, along with the apple chunks; set aside. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
While the potatoes simmer, place the bacon in a skillet over medium heat. Stir occasionally, until crisp, around 4-5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove all but 3 tablespoons of the bacon grease; save any extra for future use.
Lower the heat, add the onion to the skillet; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and beginning to caramelize, about 4 minutes. Whisk in the garlic, brown sugar, vinegar, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sugar dissolves and the liquid is reduced by around three-quarters, 4-5 minutes; whisk in the mustard and black pepper.
Pour the liquid over the potatoes and apples. Stir gently, folding to avoid breaking up the potatoes. Slide into the preheated oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are a bit browned and fork-tender. Remove from the oven, add the parsley and bacon. Stir very gently, until evenly combined and coated. Taste; adjust seasoning, if desired.
Sprinkle with the chives; let stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm. Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days; reheat in the microwave.
NOTES: Red potatoes work best for this, as they hold their shape better. I use golf ball-sized of smaller. You want bite-sized pieces. Sometimes I add a couple tablespoons of powdered chicken base; lower the salt to 1 teaspoon. You may wish to include 1 celery rib, finely diced, when you add the apple; omit the celery seed. Another option is to add 1 cup well-drained sauerkraut with the apples. If you wish, add 1 teaspoon whole caraway seeds to the liquid, about half-way through the reduction time. If you prefer, add 1-2 tablespoon chopped, fresh dill, instead of the parsley.
Twisted German Potato Salad Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2021. All rights reserved.