Grilled Sausages with German Potato Salad

I've adopted a very unfortunate weather-related response in the last few weeks. As discussions arise about how unseasonably brisk our Northeast summer has been this season, I can't help but fire back a slightly snarky "Oh summer is totally on its way! It'll be here next summer for sure." Long story short, it's downright chilly for mid-June in New York! Seems to me an occasion befitting of some hearty and delicious classic German potato salad. Also, full disclosure, I'm not exactly sure that my grandma knew how the Germans of yesteryear made their potato salad. This just happens to be how she always made and subsequently announced the arrival of her potato salad when I was a kid. The signature touch of this particular style of a picnic's favorite side dish is the vinaigrette-based dressing it gets tossed in. Mayo is not an overlooked omission here, he's sitting this game out. It's also crucially key, no matter how you may make your potato salad, to dress it while the potatoes are still hot. Do that and those starchy little sponges will soak up all that delicious flavor with unrivaled conviction. Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got to resume my search for the real summer of 2013.

Recipe courtesy Patrick Decker
TOTAL TIME: 40 min
Prep: 20 min
Inactive Prep: --
Cook: 20 min
 
YIELD: 4 servings
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 1/2 pounds pork sausage, such as kielbasa or sweet Italian
  • 2 pounds baby red and white potatoes, scrubbed
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard, plus more for serving
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Directions

Preheat a gas grill to medium-high (or ignite a batch of charcoal and arrange them in a charcoal grill) and lightly grease the grill grate with nonstick cooking spray.

Grill the sausages, turning occasionally, until marked and cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Reserve warm.

While the sausages are cooking, place the potatoes into a medium pot and cover with cold water. Salt the water liberally and place the pot over high heat. Bring the water up to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and boil the potatoes until fork tender, 12 to 15 minutes.

While the potatoes are boiling, in a large bowl whisk together the olive oil, mustards, shallot, garlic, dill and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper and reserve.

When the potatoes are tender, drain them well in a colander and let them cool for a few minutes until they're cool enough to handle (they still need to be hot). Slice the potatoes and add them to the bowl with the dressing. Gently toss the salad to coat the potatoes in the dressing.

Serve the cooked sausages with the potato salad and additional whole grain mustard for dipping.

Notes

Cook's Note: "Pasting" garlic is a great way to incorporate its flavor into a sauce or vinaigrette without ending up with chunks of garlic in each bite. Finely chop the garlic and then gather it into a pile. Sprinkle a hefty bit of salt on the pile and use the side of your knife to scrape the garlic into the cutting board, mashing it into a paste with the help of the coarse salt.

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