Mom's Mustard Potato Salad

Sarah Walls

Potato salad has become a signature Southern food in large part due to the fact that it is relatively easy to make.  This recipe has been in the family for a very long time, dating all the way back to my great-great grandmother.  My grandmother, June Sullivan Walls, who was born and raised in Grayson County, Virginia, taught the recipe to my mother, Darlene Walls.  Since then it has become a staple food at all of our family events and get-togethers.  We generally serve it at Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, the Fourth of July, and at all family reunions.  The recipe and the ingredients are quite simple yet make an absolutely mouth-watering dish.  To me, this recipe is significant because there is nothing else like it.  I have yet to find another recipe that comes close to matching it in taste.  Every holiday and special occasion I look forward to helping prepare and eat this dish.  Everyone in my family and extended family loves it. 

4 pounds Irish potatoes (homegrown if you have them), peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes (8 cups)

6 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

2 cups sweet pickles (bread and butter), chopped


1 ½ cups mayonnaise

3 tablespoons yellow mustard

¼ cup sugar

Bring 12 cups of water to a rolling boil in a large pot over high heat.  Add 1 teaspoon of salt to water.  Add the potatoes and cook until tender enough to easily be pierced with a fork, but not falling apart, about 15 minutes.  Drain.

To prepare dressing, combine the mayonnaise (my mom uses Kraft), mustard, and sugar in a bowl.  Mix well.

Combine the potatoes, eggs, and pickles in a large bowl.  Add the dressing and stir until evenly coated.  Refrigerate overnight.