September 11, 2013

Clean eating potato salad (and other excitement)

If you don't know me, you don't know that I get excited about little things like sitting by myself and eating half of a watermelon and double dipping a thousand times over with my spoon because I can or seeing a couple of deer skip through the woods after a giant hill climb during a hotter-than-heck trail run. So when something really big comes along, the excitement is off the charts. Which is where it's at this week as I wait for this.

You might go blind if you actually try and read that tiny print. So here's a summary: my butt better be sitting in front of this MacBook on Friday morning at 9 a.m. (central time) with a credit card in hand to register for Boston. I'm double-toe-touch-round-off-back-handspring-back-layout excited. Not that I can actually do any of those moves, but if I could, sonny, I'd be a doin' 'em. 

To pass the time, I am eating like a machine. After my 24-mile trail race this weekend, I didn't eat much until that night. It seems that the heat and effort from the day made me more nauseated than hungry immediately after the race. Then I had normal human portions at dinner, and when 10:30 rolled around, that is precisely the time that my body demanded meat! I raided the eggs and ham like a carnivorous monster just let out of its dusty, vegan cage, and that monster (me) was not likely to stop there. I'm writing this on Wednesday night, and mostly all I can think about is what other snacks are available for my consumption.

I for serious cannot stop eating and drinking. 

Unless you were to hand me this Hey Song Sarsaparilla. My husband thought that Chinese root beer would be a good idea, but it turns out it was a bad, bad idea. China, you do so many good things with food, and yet this is absolutely not one of them. Please stop!

Hey Song Thisdrinkstinks

And just to balance out the hate, I'm gonna pour some love sauce onto this recipe that I tried recently. I'm still trying to avoid dairy and refined sugar, two ingredients in potato salad which is one of my all-time favorite potluck/family reunion foods. Even with the scariness of mayo in the hot sun for five long reunion hours, I still can't help but go back for thirds and fourths. A big ole helping of dysentery just waiting to happen.

So at a recent pool party, I of course was craving the potato salad goods. What goes better with pool splashing and humidity?

Definitely not fake bites.

Pool kidlets.

Ezra is ready.

Cutest friend ever visiting from Texas.

Oh, back to the food.

So here was the solution I found to the dilemma of needing potato salad without the sugary and mayo-y parts: German potato salad! Having German ancestry and all, I feel like I should have known about such a delicious concoction, and I'm slightly annoyed (not really) with my ancestors for not passing this down sufficiently.

It's even meant to be served warm, which is perfect because you know that's how it's going to get at a picnic anyway.

So here's the recipe with my modifications:

Clean eating potato salad 

3 cups diced and peeled potatoes
4 strips of bacon
1 small red onion, diced
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tbs water
1 1/2 tbs honey
1 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1 tbs chopped fresh parsley

Place potatoes in a pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Let boil for 10 minutes or until able to easily pierce with a fork. Drain potatoes and set aside to cool. 

Over medium-high heat, fry bacon until browned and crisp in a large, deep skillet. Remove from skillet and set aside. 

Place onions in the bacon grease and cook until browned. Then add vinegar, honey, water, salt and pepper to the skillet. Bring to a boil, and then add the potatoes and parsley. Heat through. Crumble in half of the bacon, saving the second half to top the dish before serving. Serve warm. 

That's it. Super simple, plus it makes fantastic leftovers. Also when I made it, I tripled the recipe. How can anyone make just four servings of this? Does not compute.

Are you stalking the calendar on any upcoming race registrations? 

What's your favorite dish at the family reunion and/or church potluck?

Have you tried Chinese root beer? Did you vomit immediately? I've yet to find another country that makes root beer to my satisfaction. And honestly, I didn't know any were even trying until my husband bought that Chinese one. I tried to give one of my Russian friends an amazingly delicious taste of root beer once, and she gagged. It's hard for me to imagine, but I guess root beer is an acquired taste. 


  1. The only potato salad that I like it my mom's. It's yummy and delicious and super fattening, but I don't care. And desserts. Love desserts. I have not tried Chinese root beer but I don't really drink a lot of pop, so that's probably why. I will know to avoid it from here on out.

  2. I love a good potato salad! I usually make mine with apple cider vinegar, some honey mustard and a tiny bit of mayo. I have been know to add a few sweet potatoes to the mix too. :D
    I was planted firmly on my butt on Monday when Boston registration opened. I am in and SO looking forward to next year!!! I have never had Chinese root beer. You are a brave soul for even trying it! I'm not a big soda drinker but if I'm going indulge, it has to be root beer all. the. way.

    1. Yay, you're in! And I love the idea to sub in apple cider vinegar instead of the white.

  3. Root beer is DISGUSTING (said the Brit). Only made worse when it's a float. Ugh. You Americans!!!

    This is my current favourite salad - kale waldorf. Heaven.

    Good luck on Friday - really excited for you.

    1. See, this confirms my theory that the rest of the world thinks we're crazy when it comes to root beer.

  4. Sounds yummy!! There is a great German restaurant in Nashville that serves a very similar recipe! YUM. they also have great beer.

  5. Exciting about Boston! You better be ready to go Friday morning;) I love potato salad. My mom's is the best and I get super excited when I find out she is making it! I will risk sun baked mayo for potato salad:)

  6. That potato salad recipe looks good - I prefer it without the mayo and sugar, too!
    And I pretty much pass on all root beer!!

  7. So excited (and just a tad jealous) that you get to register Friday morning. I'm running a marathon Saturday (nothing like last minute pressure) and hoping I can run 5 minutes under my BQ, then I could register Saturday!

  8. Good luck with Boston registration! It is so amazing! Maybe one day I will try to run it again, but right now I'm doing marathons in states I haven't done yet and I can't do that many a year. I love potato salad as long as it doesn't have tons of mayo in it. Your recipe sounds delicious. Will have to try it!

    1. I definitely won't be doing it again anytime soon if I get in for 2014. It's just so expensive to register, travel, etc. that it's not worth it to me to make it a frequent thing.

  9. Oh, root beer. I remember hating it when I was a kid. Every single time my mom would drink it I'd BEG her for sips and would wretch and gag after drinking it.

    (Side? I feel like asking repeatedly was probably the most annoying thing ever, and she probably gave my the drink just to see me wretch and and be miserable.)

    By the time I was a teenager the coolest thing to do was to hang out at coney island restaurants, eat hot dogs and drink root beer and all of a sudden my friends thought that it was awesome and I, much like you speculate, acquired the taste.

    The end.

  10. It's 8:52, and I am crossing my fingers hoping that you get in!!! Geno registered on Monday. I am so freakin' excited to be going to Boston (with Geno) this year!!! Anyone fast enough to qualify for America's best race has my utmost respect!

    1. Thanks, Paige!!! I hope I see you guys in the masses up there!

  11. So . . . bacon is accepted into the "clean eating" category?

    1. Hahaha, it is for me! It's a pretty wide open category, right?! Our bacon was from a pig Amory's brother had slaughtered, if that counts. I think the whole idea is to stay away from processed foods, so I took out the refined sugar and mayo. Clean eating is definitely used by different people to mean different things!

  12. Good luck in Boston. My daughter is in college up in Boston - I'll tell her to cheer you on! ;DI like making potato salad with a bit of olive oil, and red wine vinegar, red onion, fresh basil, a bit of salt & crushed pepper. It's simple and delicious!

  13. I love funeral potatoes. I don't ever make them because I immediately become bloated and sick from their richness. But if they are being served I can't stay away.
    I am not stalking for any races but good luck with Boston! I have a couple of friends going! I wish I could go just to watch!
    No chinese root beer. Right away it feels suspicious.


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