Contributed by K.C. Gulbro, Nationally-Recognized Chef and Restaurateur
Summer is coming fast, and if you are wondering how to come up with an easy recipe while keeping the kids busy, look no further.
Owning two successful restaurants and being in the business since the age of sixteen, I’ve had my share of preparing easy and delicious potato salads. This potato salad in particular is so easy to make that even your kids can help (without destroying your kitchen)! Cooking with your little ones is a great way to get them involved so you won’t have to hear “we are so bored” or “there’s nothing to eat around here!” This dish will be a hit with the whole family, and with the kids’ participation, it will be that much more appreciated! 🙂
I like to make a classic, and one of my favorites is German potato salad.
2 lbs Yukon gold or red bliss potatoes
2 ½ cup chicken stock
3 oz of red wine vinegar
3 oz of diced white onion
Salt and pepper to taste
1 Tsp of granulated sugar
1 tsp of dijon mustard
2 tsp of brown mustard
4-5 slices of applewood smoked bacon
¼ cup of diced parsley for an added touch of color and flavor
For additional added flavor you can add 2-3 tsp of crumbled blue cheese
Get 2 lbs of Yukon Gold or Red Bliss potatoes (waxy potatoes like these or fingerling/marbled potatoes will hold structure and give the salad some wonderful color). Your kids can help you pick out the ingredients at the store. You can even make a spelling game out of the list, or a competition of who finds the ingredients first!
Wash potatoes (your kids can do this).
Place in boiling, salted water until fork tender- about 7-10 minutes.
Remove from water and cut potatoes to a medium dice while hot (you can do this before boiling if potatoes are larger). Don’t be afraid of a little skin, as it will help hold the structure and flavor in the salad.
While the potatoes are boiling, start making the marinade and bring it to a boil (this makes sure the flavors are evenly distributed and will absorb evenly into the spuds). For the marinade, I like using: a little chicken stock, vinegar, 1 tsp dijon mustard, chopped white onion, sugar, and salt and pepper. Depending on your kids’ age, have them make the marinade or help you to add the ingredients.
Render bacon, but do not make it crispy – you want it to have a little chew. When finished, dice bacon into medium to small dice. For the more academically inclined parents, you can play with the diced bacon for multiplication, division, and fraction games!
Hold on to some of the drippings, it also adds flavors – 2 tsp is good.
When potatoes are still warm, toss gently together with warm marinade and rendered bacon. With the extra crumbled bleu cheese (optional) and remaining mustard – it is fine if they melt a little with the potatoes – it gets that flavor going. That’s an easy task for your kids!
Let it sit at room temperature or cool in the fridge (I like it a little warm, but it is your preference).
Taste, then add salt and pepper as needed.
Garnish with parsley, stir, and serve. For the creative parents, give yourself and your kid(s) a separate bowl and try to come up with fun garnish designs. The sky’s the limit!
PLEASE note: Health codes state that dishes cannot be served after sitting for four hours, so watch your time and temperatures. Refrigerate and stir as needed to keep it out of the danger zone.
Enjoy this great summer dish and feel free to connect with me via social media and tell me about your experience making it!
About K.C. Gulbro and his restaurants:
Chef K.C. Gulbro, Nationally-recognized Chef and Restaurateur, owner of two successful restaurants in Geneva, IL: FoxFire – an upscale steakhouse, and Copper Fox – an upscale pub with a banquet hall within the facility. What sets K.C.’s restaurants apart is not only the luxury and quality of food but also the top-notch dining experience and service. Feel free to connect with K.C. via social media. His information is below.