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My Ross Family Hot Mashed Potato Salad
Since Thanksgiving is coming up, I thought I would share with you my favorite Thanksgiving recipe.
This is my #1 favorite childhood family recipe. It’s mashed potatoes with ingredients you would add to potato salad: hard-boiled eggs, raw onions, fresh parsley, and vinegar. So it eats like mashed potatoes, but tastes like potato salad. I just looked this up online for the first time and I see there are other recipes for mashed potato salad that use mayonnaise and mustard and pickles, but my recipe is simpler. And it’s authentic to my family.
I have made this so many times, but at first only for Christmas and then only Christmas and Thanksgiving after my other grandmother died. This recipes is actually is my personal version. The version that was handed down to me was made with white onions and white vinegar served at my great-aunt Ollie’s house in Saratoga, California. She lived in a beautiful house in a forest that she and her husband had built. It was all glass around the exterior so you could see the trees and deer, and had a big round fireplace in the middle with a big round copper hood. And these potatoes were always on the table. But I like to use red onions because you can see their red flecks in the white potato, and you can’t see white onion against a white potato.
After my great-aunt died, holiday dinners were at my widowed father’s house, but we still had mashed potato salad. When he remarried his new wife wanted to use green onions and she and I would argue about how much vinegar to use. I, of course, thought it should be MY way because the potatoes were from MY family.
Even though i only make mashed potato salad twice a year, it connects me to my roots. And it’s the one dish I HAVE to have. It just occurred to me…I should wear my Ross clan tartan when I eat it…
As much as I have insisted on authenticity in the past, I have to admit that just now when I made a batch for the photo, I used whole potatoes with skins, white balsamic vinegar, green onions, parsley, hard-boiled eggs and butter. So really, use any potatoes, any onions, any vinegar…add anything you want. Make it your family mashed potato salad. Or eat mine…I have plenty to share.
About the potatoes. For years I just used standard peeled russet potatoes to make these mashed potatoes. However, more recently we now have all kinds of potatoes available. I now use small white potatoes with thin skins to make mashed potatoes (I used these to make the recipe for the photo above). By using these potatoes, I can eat the whole potato, including skins, without the skins being too obvious. These thin skins seem to just blend right in when you mash the potatoes.
Makes 8 1/2 cup servings
- 4 cups chopped white potatoes
- 1 chopped hard-cooked egg (how to make perfect hard-cooked eggs every time)
- 2 tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons butter
- apple cider vinegar, to taste
Peel the potatoes and cut them into uniform pieces, about 1 inch in size. Place them in a pot and cover with water. Boil for about 15 minutes, or until soft (you should be able to easily insert a fork). Remove the potatoes to a bowl and mash (I use a hand potato masher). Add the butter and mix in. Sprinkle vinegar on top, mix in, and taste, until you’ve added the right amount to your liking. I use only enough so I can barely taste it, some other people like more. Add the onion, parsley, and eggs, and mix gently.