Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Too hot to cook

Totally hilarious midgrade author, class of 2k8 student, and fellow Canadian Barrie Summy is collecting summer recipes. So this one's for her down in sunny California. (Where she lives in a bowl of split pea soup .)
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Summer's on and I've got no air conditioning. :( That's okay - we enjoy shade trees instead. Still, we must eat and cooking involves more heat. When I was in Ukraine, I noted that 'summer kitchens' were popular. That way the cooking wouldn't warm up the rest of the house. Well, I have no summer kitchen - but we've got an outdoor fire pit to cook meat and we have a fridge - a necessary place to store this make-ahead side dish.

Here's what I remember about my mom's Kartoffel Salat - aka potato salad. Make it in the evening or very early in the morning.

Ingredients:
Two potatoes per person. (Mom always used red potatoes.)
Two big dill pickles per person.
One or two onions. (NOT per person)
Two apples.
A bunch of radishes.
One egg per person.
Enough mayonnaise to stick everything together. (Be generous.)
Some sour cream.
Pickle juice - maybe a quarter cup
Salt and pepper

Action:
1. Boil the potatoes with their skins on. (Don't overcook.)
2. While the potatoes are boiling chop up the pickles, onions, half of the radishes and the peeled apples. (Save a few pickles for the garnish.)
3. In a large, wide surfaced bowl mix the pickles, onions, pickle juice, spices and mayonnaise and sour cream together. (More mayonnaise than sour cream.) Add salt and pepper.
4. Drain the potatoes. Let them cool until they are touchable. Then peel and chop while them they're still warm.
5. Carefully add potatoes to the pickle, mayonnaise mixture. You don't want the potatoes to get too mushy.
6. Taste and adjust the spices of #3 accordingly.
7. Cover and let sit in fridge overnight.
8. Serving day: garnish with pickles, sliced radishes and hard boiled eggs.
(Pickle slices make good eyebrows and impish grin, radish slices make great rosy cheeks; while the eggs make good eyeballs plus Goldilocks-style curls to frame the face - with more pickle slices sticking out for devilish embellishment.) Garnish designs are endless.

Serve with European wieners, horseradish-powered mustard, and fresh buns. My beverage of choice would be a German beer - dark and strong.

Now I must go outside and kill a few more mosquitoes so that we can enjoy the great outdoors.

HAPPY CANADA DAY, eh?
We're having saskatoon pie for dessert - only in Canada!

8 comments:

Barrie said...

This Kartoffel Salat looks great, Gabe! I've never met a potato I didn't like! And I'm sure it goes well with split pea soup. :)

Okay, just what is Saskatoon pie?

Thanks for joining in!

Just a Plane Ride Away said...

Your Kartoffel Salat looks great :-) Pickle juice, must be the secret ingredient huh? And I'm right there with you on the German beer--excellent! In fact, I posted a couple of large ones with my recipe too--Hofbrauhaus because it was the biggest of the ones we tried. I liked Andechs and Barfuber (from Nuremberg).

debra said...

Sounds like something my Grandmother used to make--and she was from Ukraine

Chantal said...

I find that potato salad is one of those dishes that everyone has a favourite and I honestly have never tried to make one myself. I will have to try yours and I just might have to adopt it :) (with full credit to you and your mother of course)

Mary said...

Ooh, I really like the sound of this! I’ve copied and saved the recipe. :)

Jason said...

This sounds totally awesome. I'm glad barrie did this, but all these good recipes are making me really hungry.

gabe said...

I'm thrilled to have so many comments! Wow, thanks Barrie.

Saskatoon pie is made from berries that look and taste a lot like blueberries. They grow on human height bushes out on the prairies - maybe even near Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Annie said...

Nothing beats a good potato salad on a hot day.