Here is a potato salad recipe just in time for your spring picnics. This one is a little different than what we normally think of when we conjure up mental images of potato salad, but it’s a good addition to those picnics, lunch boxes, and even weekday family dinners.
The recipe is from the April 1943 issue of Woman’s Day magazine. It was in the front of the magazine feature called the “Woman’s Day War Food Bulletin” that was included to help women navigate the changes in food shopping and availability during rationing years.
The recipe served 6-8 and cost 35 cents when tested in the Woman’s Day Kitchen in March 1943. It was submitted by Mrs. Wesley N. Manchester of Havre de Grace, Maryland.
Hot Potato Cheese Salad
- 2 tsp dry mustard
- 2 tsp salt
- 4 tsp sugar
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 2 c milk
- 1 egg, grade B, beaten
- 1/2 c mild vinegar
- 1 c grated cheese
- 2 qt hot cubed, cooked, potatoes
- 1/4 c chopped celery
Combine mustard, salt, sugar, flour, and paprika. Add milk and beaten egg. Mix well. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove from heat and slowly add vinegar and cheese, stirring until cheese is melted. Mix sauce lightly with hot potatoes. Add celery and serve. Left-over salad maybe thinned with a little milk and served cold. May be packed in glass jars or waxed paper cups for lunch boxes.
It doesn’t look like there are potato cubes in this dish, but I promise there are! In fact, when you serve the potato salad on plates, there are perfect proportions of cheese sauce and potato. If you read over that ingredients list and the large amount of vinegar gave you pause, let me assure you that it didn’t end up as acidic as I was afraid it would. In fact, every one of my taste testers liked the potato salad and requested that we make it again. I think that without the vinegar, it would have tasted like your typical cheesy potato dish. These potatoes had a bit of a pleasant kick to them.
I like how either Mrs. Manchester or Woman’s Day suggested using the left-overs for a second meal or to add to a lunch box. Using up all the food in the kitchen was an important part of the home front battle.
One last thing I want to mention—this dish was meant to be used as a meatless lunch or supper. It was included as a suggestion for meatless Lenten dishes. I don’t think it was enough for a meal, even if some bread was added. We ate ours with a 1960s steak and mushroom recipe and the potato salad made a nice side dish.
What is your favorite potato salad recipe? Have you eaten one like this before?