German Potato Salad

Recipe by Nancy Johnson; Wine Commentary by Gary Twining.

One of the highlights of our family picnics is my Aunt Donna’s German potato salad, which she’s been making for us since I was a tot. While my aunt gave me the recipe without any measurements, I’ve made the salad as described here, adding more oil, vinegar or sugar as needed. It all depends on how much dressing the potatoes soak up, so use your judgment and taste buds to adjust. Give it a try and make it your own.

5 pounds red potatoes, boiled just until tender, peeled and diced

4 slices bacon, cooked, fat reserved and bacon crumbled

2 celery stalks, sliced

1 English cucumber, peeled and diced

1 small red onion, diced

1/4 cup bacon drippings

1/4 cup canola oil, as needed

Salt and pepper, to taste

1/4 cup cider vinegar

1/4 cup sugar

1 cup torn butter lettuce

Paprika, for garnish

In a large bowl, gently mix the warm potatoes, celery, cucumber and onion with bacon drippings to coat, adding canola oil if needed. Season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, mix cider vinegar with sugar. Pour a bit over a little at a time, tasting as you go. Just before serving, taste and correct dressing as needed, fold in butter lettuce, and top with crumbled bacon. Garnish with paprika. Serve warm or cold. Serves 6-8.

Gary: While this can be served as a side dish, it also could be featured on its own and paired with a wine. With the salt and richness of the bacon, the acidity of the cider vinegar and the sweetness of sugar, a softly sweet Riesling, Chenin Blanc/Vouvray, lightly sweet sparkler or any other white with good acidity and a dollop of sweetness would be a lovely pairing.

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