So, I’m not entirely sure how traditional this German-Style Potato Salad is. My brain just decided that since it had no mayonnaise, and instead bacon fat, it must be German potato salad. Good reasoning skills brain!
This potato salad is served warm, which makes it all the more delicious because then the potatoes and bacon are still crispy and wonderful. Plus, what’s more comforting than warm potatoes? Warm potatoes engulfed in bacon fat, you say? Oh, then perfect!
What I love most about this potato salad is actually the inclusion of tarragon. Tarragon is a very underutilized herb in my kitchen, and after this salad, it is something that I am vowing to change! Tarragon has a rather unique favor to it; it’s slightly like anise or fennel, but yet still in a category all its own. And, when combined with the parsley and thyme, here, it has a zesty freshness to it that totally elevates this dish.
By the way, leftovers make an awesome hash the next morning with a fried egg on top!
I would just like to add at the end here that I think it’s absolutely imperative to use a sweet onion in this dish. Since the onion is left raw, I believe that any other type (red, white, shallot) would overpower the other flavors of the dish. I used a Texas Sweet Onion, but a Vidalia, Walla Walla, or Maui would all work perfectly. I love the crunch and slight sweetness that the onion provides, and I would never leave it out!
German-Style Potato Salad
recipe adapted from here
- 4lbs baby/new potatoes
- grape seed oil, salt, and freshly-ground pepper, to dress the potatoes
- 6-8 slices thick-cut bacon (about 1/2 lb or a bit more)
- 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 tsp dijon mustard
- roughly 1/3 cup grape seed oil
- 1 sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced (I used a mandolin to get paper-thin slices)
- 1 bunch fresh tarragon, torn
- small handful of fresh, flat-leaf parsley, torn
- leaves from 3-5 sprigs of fresh thyme
- salt and freshly-ground pepper, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Wash and dry the potatoes. Halve the potatoes so that they are bite-sized (the really small ones you can leave whole). Toss the potatoes in a couple tablespoons of grape seed oil, salt, and pepper. Roast on a baking sheet for 25 minutes, or until they are slightly golden and the insides are soft.
- Meanwhile, slice the bacon into small strips. Cook the bacon until crispy. With a slotted spoon, remove the bacon pieces from the pan and place them on a plat lined with a paper towel. Pour the bacon fat from the pan into a glass measuring cup. Add some grape seed oil to the measuring cup to get it to the 2/3 cup mark.
- For the vinaigrette, pour the vinegar into a large salad bowl. Add salt to taste. Whisk in some pepper, and the mustard. Add the bacon fat/grape seed oil combo in a thin stream, all the while whisking. Add the onion and herbs to the bowl and allow them to macerate while the potatoes continue to cook.
- When the potatoes are done, pour them into the bowl, and very gently toss to coat. Add in the bacon pieces and mix. Serve warm.