Krista's Favorite Potato Salad

Potato salad is one of those dishes that everyone makes a little bit differently. It seems like the last few times I've eaten potato salad, something was missing and it wasn't quite right -- not to my taste anyway. Either someone didn't like pickles, or vinegar, or eggs, or decided to forgo the mayo! So, today, I'm throwing in all the things that I love in potato salad. Like Julie's pasta salad, there's room to make this your own. Add the things you love and remove the ingredients you hate.

When I told my mom I would be making potato salad, she got excited and asked if I would be making it like her sister did. Yup. My aunt had a secret! It's coming up.

It's hard to go wrong with potato salad. Probably the worst thing that will happen is it will become mushy (but the flavors will still be great!). Two little things can help you avoid that.

First, pick the right potato. Russet potatoes are great for baking, because they become so wonderfully flaky on the inside. But for potato salad, you want a firm potato, like a red-skinned potato.

Second, cut the potatoes when they're cold. They're easier to handle, but they also keep their shape better so there's less chance of the mush factor. The great news is that you can boil the potatoes the day before, or in the morning, and refrigerate them until you're ready to use them.

Cook them with the peel on. Whether or not you peel them is up to you. I like the peel, but not everyone does. While you're at it, go ahead and hard boil the eggs, too, to save time later.

Here's my aunt's clever secret. Take the time to cut the potatoes into 1/2 inch cubes. That way, the dressing is spread throughout the potatoes better, and each mouthful has more of the yummy ingredients in it. So simple but what a difference!

Krista's Favorite Potato Salad

5 pounds of red-skinned potatoes

6 hard-boiled eggs

1 Vidalia onion

5-6 large ribs of celery

6 pickles

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup pickle juice

3 tablespoons mustard

salt to taste

Cook the potatoes and cut into small pieces when cold. Peel and cut the eggs. Slice the onion, celery and pickles (I like the pickles in little chunks). Place all in a large bowl. Add the pickle juice (if you're unsure about this, add slowly to taste), mayonnaise, mustard, and salt, and mix well.

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