Lick-The-Bowl-Good Polish Potato Salad

This Polish potato salad is based on a recipe in Anna Thomas’s classic, “The Vegetarian Epicure,” and it is so good that you’ll want to lick the bowl. This is one dish that I do make exceedingly well. However, I had to simplify her recipe a bit (Anna’s recipe method required two days of preparation) — the original was simply too labor-intensive and time-consuming.

1/2 lb. pickled mushrooms, sliced
6 to 8 waxy potatoes, boiled, peeled & diced
4 tart green apples, peeled, cored & diced
2 1/2 cups diced dill pickles
4 whole hardcooked eggs & 3 hardcooked egg whites, chopped (cook seven eggs)
1 1/2 cup peas, cooked but still firm
1 1/2 cup sliced carrots, cooked but but still firm
1/2 cup tiny pickled cocktail onions
1/2 onion, finely chopped

Put everything in a bowl, add salt, freshly ground black pepper, olive oil, wine vinegar & some marinade liquid from the mushrooms and toss. Next, make the mayonnaise-sour cream sauce:

3 hardcooked egg yolks
6 to 8 Tablespoons olive oil
3 to 4 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 cup or more sour cream (I use almost a cup of sour cream)
1- 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
salt & pepper

Put yolks, oil, lemon juice and sugar in blender, blend at high speed until smooth & emulsified. Add sour cream, mustard, salt & pepper & blend until thick and pale yellow. Combine the salad with enough mayonnaise-sour cream sauce to bind it together. Spread the remaining sauce on top of the salad and decorate with more vegetables. This makes a *huge* amount- great for a party. I like to add pickled capers (pickled caulifower would be good, too) and some freshly chopped dill to the salad, but they’re not essential and aren’t in the original recipe.

PS: You should read the original recipe – it requires you to pickle your own mushrooms! It is complex, but not difficult and it really is delicious. Great to bring to a party, people will oooh and aaah, especially if you decorate the top with an elaborate veggie design. I’ve never gotten more complements for any dish than I have for this. 🙂


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