Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day, Heritage and Potato Salad

The title is either a brilliant summary or the heading for a really boring blog post.  I'll let you decide. . . .

First, Happy Mother's Day!  To all the moms, grammys, aunts, godmothers, future moms and those who are motherly:  Have a fabulous day!  The world needs many more women like you.

On to the Heritage part. . .

My second grade daughter was recently given an assignment to bring in a family recipe that somehow reflected some of her family heritage.  This recipe was to be put in a class cookbook and shared with all the families.  It's a brilliant idea that combines the concepts and skills of measuring, writing and direction following.  It was also supposed to be fun to pick out a recipe with my child.

It turned out to be extremely frustrating for me.  Between my husband's ancestory and mine, my kids have a lot of culture to choose from.  I hauled out recipes from my husband's Swedish side (Apple Kuechen, anyone?) and from both our mothers' German roots.  I pulled out a great Soda Bread recipe from my Dad's Irish background and suggested that she pick something British as my grandpa's ancestors came from England.  She didn't want any of them.

I finally handed her my recipe box and went to do something else while she chose a recipe.  She chose our "Idaho" Potato Salad recipe.

I realized that, to her, her heritage wasn't the stories she hears about the people she has never met.  It's the stories she hears about the family she knows and loves.  She didn't grow up hearing about how we were related to Queen Victoria through some illegitimate child (didn't know you were in the presence of royalty when I was around, did you?!?!) or how her great-great grandparents came to America from Germany.  What she has heard is the stories of me taking six shots to kill my first elk and how her auntie got caught on barbed wire when we were hunting together.  She hears the stories of how her daddy learned to fly fish and about the rattlesnake nest her Grampy stepped in when he was climbing out of the river.  She goes back to our hometown to visit and goes hiking in the mountains and inner-tubing in the Warm River.  She visits Grammy at work and gets to see all the animals in their conference room.  She rides in a pickup that traverses things that don't even resemble roads.  She doesn't think it's odd to see wildlife on the side of the road, grazing, or hawks diving for their food in a mountain meadow.  To her, this is her heritage and I am honored to be a part of it.

So, without further ado, I will share the recipe she picked to represent her family heritage.
Idaho Potato Salad

4 cups cubed, cooked potatoes (about 4-6 potatoes, depending on size)
1 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2/3 cup salad dressing (like Miracle Whip)
2 tablespoons mustard
1 teaspoon celery seed
4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1/4 cup onion, chopped

Mix onion, eggs, bacon, celery seed and potatoes together.  Add the mayonnaise, salad dressing and mustard.  Stir until completely coated.  Put in bowl and cover.  Chill one hour before serving.

Happy Mother's Day!


  1. hmm interesting
    Making family recipe never crossed my mind.However i will try it.It would be nice to have some meal that is specific for my family that even my grand children will make to their children

    1. Thank you! I was quite humbled that my daughter picked this recipe. It's one that I tweeked for our family's taste.