Update on the potato salad and green beans

We recently invited you to share your potato-salad preferences and no-no’s, with a promise to use your suggestions for a church cookout.

Don’t laugh, but I literally made a Yes/ No chart of the comments we received by blog, Facebook and email — to help me decide which direction to go.

My chart

I’ll cut to the chase and say the comments led me to make a potato salad with hard-boiled chopped eggs, finely chopped Vidalia onion, chopped dill pickles, salt, pepper, dill, a big dose of mayonnaise and shot of spicy brown mustard. I dusted it with smoked paprika.

I really would have liked to leave out the eggs and add cucumbers or celery. I would have preferred to use a lot more mustard. I really wanted to serve the German Potato Salad suggested by Karoline Berg.

But I wanted to be faithful to the majority of commenters, which led me to buy the first bottle of Hellman’s mayonnaise that I ever bought in my life!

I made a potato salad using 10 pounds of russets and 15 eggs. By the time I tasted it 10 to 15 times to make sure it was right, I couldn’t tell any more (and I didn’t care). The good news is that I got a handful of compliments (from my friends, of course) during last night’s church cookout.

The white half-runner beans that Marci made for the cookout, however, were a big hit! She made them with chunks of country ham. Several of our guests wanted take-home portions. (See photo above.) We’ll have to tell Casey, who grew and picked the beans at the Henderson Settlement greenhouses.

Before I go, I wanted to share a couple of the potato salad comments from our readers:

From Kathy Kilday Gillenwaters: My mother, Genie Vance Kilday, taught me how to make the very best potato salad – courtesy of Jane Irwin: potatoes, cucumber, onion, dill pickles, maybe some chopped boiled eggs mayonnaise (Hellman’s only), salt, pepper, dill weed, and (the secret ingredient), dill pickle juice. All of the above are in quantities of “until it looks right” or “until it tastes right.” I haven’t made it in a very long time, but when I do, it’s a special treat.

From Douglas Moore: 5 lbs. cooked and peeled Idaho russets; 1/2 inch chunks; 8 hard-boiled eggs, mashed and mixed; 3 diced kosher dills; 2 diced Vidalia onions; just enough Hellman’s or Kraft mayonnaise to coat the ingredients.

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