My sister-in-law has always been an amazing cook. When we gathered for family parties, everyone eagerly watched to see what kind of culinary delight she would bring. She never let us down.
Several years ago, my anticipation quickly turned to disenchantment when she showed up to our Memorial Day cookout with a bowl of potato salad, a dish so normal and benign-sounding I counted on disappointment. At first, I thought I would not even try it; saving room for dessert would probably be smarter. But since I did not want to offend her, I sampled a small plate.
By the end of the night, I had forgone dessert in favor of my fifth helping of the salad. Before she left, I begged for the leftovers. During subsequent months, I pleaded with her to bring my now favorite potato salad to every family gathering.
When I eventually asked her for the recipe, I was surprised by its few ingredients and forthright directions. It had never occurred to me that something so delicious would be so easy to prepare.
Olivia’s Potato Salad is now a staple of our family's Memorial Day picnic. But as a warning, after serving this salad, you will find yourself with many leftover desserts.
Olivia’s Potato Salad
Preparation time: 30 minutes
3½ pounds red potatoes
1 packet ranch dressing mix
½ large red onion
4 ounces bacon pieces
½ to ¾ tablespoon seasoning salt
¾ to 1 cup mayonnaise
Cube potatoes and boil until fork-tender. Submerge in cold water until cool. Drain.
Mince onion and mix with cooled potatoes, ranch dressing mix and bacon pieces.
Add mayonnaise a little at a time until salad has reached desired consistency.
Add seasoning salt to your liking.
Note: Keep picnic food safe by chilling well before packing and keeping food out of direct sunlight. Discard leftovers immediately.
Elizabeth Reid has bachelor’s degrees in economics and history from Utah State University. She has worked in retail, medical billing, catering, education, business and other fields. Her favorite occupation is her current job of wife and mother.