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– Time For A Tiara: Column by Ginna Young – - When you’re good at something, you’re asked to do a lot of it

When you’re good at something,  you’re asked to do a lot of it When you’re good at something,  you’re asked to do a lot of it

– Time For A Tiara: Column by Ginna Young –

Just for the record, I hate potato salad. It’s a combination of my loathing of onions and mustard, but as much as I detest it, I do admit to pride in having what most people call the best potato salad ever!

However, because of that distinction, I also get enlisted to make a lot of it. This week, for instance, I made three large batches for a graduation party I’m not even invited to.

My co-worker’s best friend’s son is graduating from Mellen High School, and Eva asked Rebecca if she knew a good potato salad recipe that would feed a large number of people. As a matter of fact, she did know of a good recipe. (I can picture her sly grin.)

At first, she was going to try to recreate it on her own, but since I’ve repeatedly had to walk people through it, “because it just didn’t turn out the way yours does,” that’s not the best approach. I know what goes wrong, it’s because I don’t really measure how much sugar, salt, Miracle Whip and mustard to use, and while I try to approximate, it really is just an “eye it” type of thing.

So, taking pity on her, I agreed to make the potato salad, if she bought the ingredients. The main thing is the cooling time; your boiled potatoes (already cut into cubes) must be completely cooled, before you begin adding the remaining ingredients.

Then, I pointed out that she’d need to get eggs right away, because they need to sit in the refrigerator for a couple weeks, since they peel better that way after boiling them, if they’re not fresh.

Of course, it wouldn’t be complete without my secret ingredient.

About a month and a half ago, we had our annual Excellence in Education awards night, and some of us pitched in to make food. My assignment was potato salad.

I ended up bringing the finished product with me to the office fridge, as I was on a short time frame. Well, of course, that led to whimperings and accusations of “you don’t even care about us,” from my two spoiled co-workers.

Finally, I caved in and gave each of them a taste, which didn’t fully satisfy Rebecca, but I had to save the rest of the potato salad for the event. Once there, it went fast, but I did have a bit left, so I dropped the rest of it off for Rebecca at home that night, much to her delight.

A couple days later, she returned the empty (and clean) container, but with a question. “Did you mean to have an extra lid on the inside bottom of the container?”

Um, no. That led to a good laugh and became my “secret ingredient.”

Anyway, now I had a lot to make for this party, but even though it sounds like a ton, it can’t top the 175 pounds I made one year, for the Cornell Food Pantry to sell at a community event. The previous year, I think I made 60-70 pounds, but my potato salad was so popular, they ran out of it early on and asked for more the next year. Gulp.

Still, it was for a good cause, so I did it, with a little help peeling potatoes, but I had major hand cramps afterward. Even little kids liked my potato salad and kept coming back to buy more, so it was a good feeling, hand cramps and all.

After that volume of potato salad I made, three batches ain’t nothing! I do have one complaint though and that is that companies do not sell extra lids with their containers. How else can I add my secret ingredient?