Traditional German Potato salad

Here is a recipe that I had in mind, but forgot to post.  I am leaving out the meatie bits or putting them on the side to make this a vegan dish.
By: Aysha Schurman
The majority of basic potato salad recipes take after one classic dish, German potato salad. This traditional red skin potato salad includes onion, bacon, vinegar and a little mustard seed. There is no limit to the variations possible on this classic recipe, making it a popular side at picnics or potlucks.
Traditional German Potato Salad Recipe
Ingredients You Will Need:
2 pounds red potatoes
½ cup cooked and crumbled bacon (about 10 large slices)
½ cup diced onion
½ cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon mustard seed
1 tablespoon parsley
Place potatoes in a large saucepan, and cover with water. Place pan over high heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer potatoes for 30 minutes. Drain water from pan, and let potatoes cool. Peel and thinly slice potatoes. Place potatoes in a large mixing bowl, and set aside.
Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp, and crumble into potatoes. Add onions to skillet with bacon fat, and sauté over medium heat for 3 minutes. Remove onions from skillet, and place in a medium mixing bowl. Add vinegar, water, sugar, salt, pepper, mustard seed and parsley to bowl. Mix well. Pour mixture into potatoes. Mix well and serve.

Final menu and agenda of planned dishes for July 17th

Green Potato soup: this might actually get done the night before so I have a dish stashed away.

Starters for those brave enough to come early.
Donuts:  Not German, but promised to Christy to lure her and Thom up to Minneapolis.  Plus I may need the sugar rush to get me through grinding 20 lbs of pork shoulder.

Sausage making: Planned on making 10 lbs of bratwurst and 5 lbs each of Italian and Polish sausage.  These is the part I am nervous about.  I have absolutely no idea how long this will take, and if it takes forever, it will throw the whole day out of whack.

Start Rue Bread

Next comes pretzels for Bob and the other folks who get there in the afternoon.  I’ve got the German style mustard seeping as I write this.  It will go into a jar tomorrow to age for a couple of days before we bust it out for pretzels and sausage.

Check the sauerkraut to see if its edible.  Set some aside for general use and make a traditional side dish with caraway and apples.

Karotten in Bier

Serve the main course, hopefully between 5 and 6 sausage making willing.

Assuming that I’m not dead on my feet.  Peanut butter cookies, also not German, but another bribe to get some shy guests into the house.

Along the way, we’ll have the typical assortment of afternoon munchies, vegetables, crackers, cheese, humus, sausage, etc.  Finally, the first batch of mead that I started based on the recipe that Colin shared; Ancient Orange Cinnamon & Clove Mead has been aging for 8 months.  I think I crack a bottle for a taste test and if it isn’t awful, it might get passed around.

Karotten im Bier

4 ea carrots; large
1 c. Dark beer; any brand
1 tsp. Sugar
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
Peel and slice carrots into long, thin slices. Melt butter in medium-size frypan; add beer and carrots. Cook slowly until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in salt and Sugar. Cook for another 2 minutes and serve hot.

Karotten im Bier
Ingredients4 ea carrots; large1 c. Dark beer; any brand1 tsp. Sugar1 tbsp. butter1/4 tsp. salt
DirectionsPeel and slice carrots into long, thin slices. Melt butter in medium-size frypan; add beer and carrots. Cook slowly until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in salt and Sugar. Cook for another 2 minutes and serve hot.

Notes: I saw the recipe and I just knew that I had to try it.  The recipe calls for dark beer, but I think I’ll have to make it it the batch of nut brown ale that I bottled last weekend.

Soft Pretzels

From Senior Alton Brown of Good Eats comes this pretzel recipe that I’m making to round out this German inspired cooking day.


  • 1 1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 22 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 4 1/2 cups
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted
  • Vegetable oil, for pan
  • 10 cups water
  • 2/3 cup baking soda
  • 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • Pretzel salt


Combine the water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside.

Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.

In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined half sheet pan.

Place the pretzels into the boiling water, 1 by 1, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Cherry Mead

Mead Batch #4  7/12/2010

Started a batch of cherry mead Monday night. I got the initial mixture too hot and cooled it down. Realized after I pitched the yeast and aerated it that there a big hot spot in the center of the carboy and wondered if I had murdered my yeast, but it was bubbling away this morning so I’m safe.

Last two batches of Mead I started I did not heat, I just mixed it all together, hit it with a stick blender and go to work.  I was a more worried about the cherries have undesirable wild yeast which is why I brought water to a boil and added the cherries and honey for a few minutes.  I didn’t measure the water which was my downfall above.  I was going for 2/3 of a gallon including cherries and I got myself almost exactly a gallon.

I didn’t use much of a recipe this time.  Either I am getting more comfortable with the process or I’m setting myself up for disaster, but here is the recipe such that is it.

  • 2 tsp of Lavin 71B-1122 (probably only needed a tsp, but I’m always nervous about not having enough).
  • 3 lbs of wildflower honey procured from the Minneapolis Farmer’s Market.
  • ~1/2 to 3/4 lb of cherries, wash with the pits removed. (I believe they were Rainer’s, but I didn’t ask the specific variety.  Also obtained from the Farmer’s market)
  • Top of carbody with water, leaving appropriate head space

Cause the water was still in the 100 degree range when I pitches the yeast, I didn’t take a specific gravity reading on this batch.  I keep intending to get better at doing this so I know the alcohol content, but part of me doesn’t care that much.  I’m making it to enjoy drinking it and serving it to friends.

Although this is the fourth batch I’ve started.  I actually haven’t really had a good sample of my own creation yet.  The first batch I started will be a year old in Novemember, so maybe I’ll break out on the bottles for the cooking day and see how it is faring.

Nervous about this weekend

I’m nervous about this one, lots of new dishes. No idea how long it’s going to take to make it all. Sauerkraut has been fermenting for almost two weeks, and I know have 20 lbs of pork shoulder in the freezer waiting for the grinder.  I haven’t got all the recipes posted, but I believe that I have the menu set.  I’ll try to get the other recipes up tonight and a list of the final menu items posted.

Hot Italian Sausage

5-lbs pork
1-cup cold red wine
1-cup chopped fresh parsley
5-tsp salt
1-tbsp garlic powder or-4 to 5 garlic cloves, minced
1-tbsp fresh ground pepper
3-tsp cayenne
5-tbsp fennel seed
2-tsp crushed chili peppers
5-tbsp paprika
Combine all, mix well & stuff into hog casing

Brautwurst recipe

5-lbs ground pork, fine grind
4-tsp sugar
1-tbsp ground coriander
1-tbsp ground sage
1-tsp paprika
1-tsp cayenne pepper
2-tsp dried rosemary
1-tbsp dry mustard
1-tsp pepper
1-tsp nutmeg
4-tsp salt
Combine all ingredients, mix well & stuff into hog casing

Polish sausage recipe

Polish Sausage

4-lbs ground pork
1-lb fine ground beef chuck
2-tsp sugar
1-tbsp marjoram
1 1/2-tbsp salt
1/2-tsp allspice
1-tbsp black pepper
1-tbsp caraway seeds
8-cloves garlic, minced
1-cup cold white wine

Combine all ingredients; mix well & stuff into hog casing

Thanks to the folks at for the recipe.

Rye bread

  • 2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 1 1/2 cups lukewarm milk
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 1/4 cups rye flour
  • 2 1/2 cups bread flour


  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water.
  2. In a large bowl combine milk, sugar, and salt. Use a mixer to beat in molasses, butter, yeast mixture, and 1 cup of rye flour.
  3. Use a wooden spoon to mix in the remaining rye flour. Add white flour by stirring until the dough is stiff enough to knead.
  4. Knead 5 to 10 minutes, adding flour as needed. If the dough sticks to your hands or the board add more flour.
  5. Cover dough and let rise 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until double.
  6. Punch down dough and divide to form two round loaves. Let loaves rise on a greased baking sheet until double, about 1 1/2 hours.
  7. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.