Vegetarian German Potato Salad

Vegetarian German Potato Salad

It’s football season so let the potluck game nights begin! Need a winner? Go vintage with this Vegetarian German Potato Salad. 

Vegetarian German Potato Salad

What happened to German potato salad? When I was was a kid in the 80s, it was a staple in my house and a must for a potluck.  My Dad would make it in the pressure cooker and it was a guaranteed crowd pleaser.  It is just one of those dishes that seems to have faded from popularity but every now and then, I get a craving for it.  The problem is that it is traditionally made with bacon and so the vegetarian version does need a little smoked paprika to bring the smokiness.  It also relies heavily on the good old fashioned parsley which another vintage type ingredient.  Why did we abandon curly leaf parsley? Will it come back? Is it considered vintage yet? I don’t care if it is not trendy, I add it in.  Classic.

If you have never had a hot german potato salad, then you are in for a treat.  This is not a mayonnaise based cold potato salad but rather something that is really more or a potato side dish than anything else.  What makes it distinctive is that it is a little sweet and a lot tangy and packs a serious flavour punch.  Traditionally the salad is made with bacon and so I have modified it a little (basically took out the bacon) to make a vegetarian version.  

As I boiled m potatoes, I started thinking.  Is this actually German or is this another one of those Betty Crocker inventions that sounded better with a foreign name?  Is there a German dish that is even remotely similar.  Out came the cook books and guess what?  It is actually a thing in Germany! There you go (apologies to Betty Crocker). 

Vegetarian German Potato SaladA quick note about flavours.  The point of this salad is that it is downright punchy.  To really get the balance of sweet and sour and mustardy, you need to start to add, taste and then adjust.  People have different tolerances for these flavours and so keep that in mind. If I am eating this at home alone in front of the tv, I make it eye-wateringly sour but if I am feeding a crowd, I tone it down a bit. I should also point out that the choice of mustard for the salad is key.  As an avid home made mustard maker, I usually have some in the fridge to turn to but if not, stick with the theme and go German for best results.  Grainy works best and gives you little burst of mustard here and there but whatever you have will be fine.  Just keep i mind that mustard varies enormously in heat and sweetness of its own and so you will need to make sure that you are tasting. 

Not making your own mustard yet? Here’s how to get started! 

Tangly, salty, sweet and hot… This might just be the most satisfying potato salad out there. 

Vegetarian German Potato Salad

Vegetarian German Potato Salad
A classic (ish) take on german potato salad.
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  1. 7-8 new potatoes or 2-3 yellow potatoes
  2. 1 red onion
  3. 1 tsp olive oil
  4. 1/3 cup chopped parsely
  5. 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  6. 1 tablespoon grainy mustard
  7. 1/3 cup water
  8. 1 tbsp brown sugar
  9. 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  10. a good pinch of salt
  1. Steam the potatoes for about 15 minutes sort until just tender.
  2. Slice the red onions and saute in the olive oil for about 5 minutes until tender and just starting to boil.
  3. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl or a mason jar and blend making sure to taste for salt.
  4. Remove the potatoes from the steamer and cut into bite sized pieces. I like to steam them whole but you can certainly cut them up beforehand.
  5. Toss in the onions and the dressing and gently mix well.
  6. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Pour the potato salad into a baking dish and bake covered for 25 minutes.
  8. Remove the lid and continue to bake for another 10 minutes.
  1. This salad is great warm but also good cold the next day so be sure to make plenty.
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