I Tried Curtis Stone’s Secret-Ingredient Potato Salad and Did Not Expect These Results
Earlier this month, Insider talked to a handful of famous chefs to see how they like to cook their potatoes, and a recipe by Curtis Stone (a beloved chef, restaurateur, and tv personality) caught my eye. His recipe has you dress the spuds in hot chicken broth infused with shallots, caper, and cornichons (aka baby pickles). I had never heard of anyone dressing their potato salad in a hot dressing, let alone a dressing made with chicken broth, so I knew I needed to try it. I headed to my kitchen, got some potatoes boiling, and gave it a try.
Get the recipe: Chef Curtis Stone’s Favorite Potato Salad
How to Make Curtis Stone’s Favorite Potato Salad
Stone’s recipe is unlike any other potato salad I’ve made, relying on hot, infused chicken broth to give it its flavor. To start, you’ll peel Yukon gold potatoes and cut them into chunks. Place them in a pot of cold, salted water, bring to a boil, and cook until tender.
As your potatoes are cooking, cook diced bacon until crispy, then transfer it to a paper towel to drain off excess grease. In a small saucepan, bring low-sodium chicken broth to a simmer and add chopped shallots, chopped cornichons, and drained capers. Cook on medium-low heat until the shallots are soft, then remove from the heat and set it aside.
Once your potatoes are tender, drain them in a colander and give them a few good shakes to remove as much water as possible. Transfer the potatoes to a large bowl and add about a third of the hot chicken broth mixture. Gently fold the potatoes and broth together until the broth has been absorbed. Repeat this process two more times, adding additional broth as needed to keep the potatoes moist.
Gently fold in the cooked bacon bits, some chopped parsley, and mayonnaise. Fold until evenly incorporated, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve right away, at room temperature, or cold.
My Honest Review of Curtis Stone’s Potato Salad
Despite everything that went into it, this potato salad was underwhelming and tasted a bit flat. I tried to help it out by seasoning it with a generous amount of salt and pepper, but the flavor was still quite dull and I wished it had more of a kick. Even just a few cloves of garlic would have helped elevate it and add a pop of savoriness.
I also didn’t love the texture of this potato salad. Adding the hot broth into the hot potatoes made the potatoes fall apart, to the point of them starting to turn into mashed potatoes. It was hard to fully incorporate all of the ingredients without damaging the potatoes too much! While they did absorb all of the liquid, they didn’t necessarily taste any better than a regular boiled potato would have.
It wasn’t a bad potato salad — in fact, I ended up eating quite a bit — but it was nothing special. I’m not sold on the idea of adding hot broth to a potato salad, and will probably not be doing it again the future. Instead, I’ll stick to my classic mayo-based dressings.
4 Tips for Making Curtis Stone’s Potato Salad
Before heading into the kitchen to make this potato salad, a few tips.
1. Use high-quality chicken broth. The chicken broth provides most of the flavor in the dressing, so invest in a brand that tastes good. If you have a stash of homemade broth in your freezer, this is the time to use it.
2. Don’t be afraid of salt. I found that this potato salad needed quite a bit of salt for it to come alive, so don’t be afraid to add a fairly generous pinch while dressing it. Right before it’s time to serve, give it a taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
3. Be careful not to overmix. My potatoes started to fall apart and turn into mashed potatoes as I was mixing them, so be careful not to accidentally smash them.
4. Feel free to add additional spices or mix-ins. I found the salad to be a bit bland, so feel free to jazz it up with some herbs, spices, garlic, or anything else you wish to add.
If you’re looking for more potato salad ideas, check out out potato salad recipe battle to see who we crowned the winner!
Have you ever made Curtis Stone’s potato salad? Tell us what you thought in the comments!