Potato Salad Commandments

Thou shalt not buy thy potato salad from the grocery store, nor from the deli, nor from any purveyors of false potato salad, unless thou livest in the promised land, in which case Cub Foods hath potato salad that'll do in a pinch.

Thou shalt take any number of eggs and a like number of potatoes and boil them separately. If thou hast not a memory of how long to cook eggs and potatoes, thou shouldst buy the checkered cookbook, which will tell thee how long to cook stuff. Thou shouldst ignore the spicing rules in the checkered cookbook, since they know nothing of the ways of garlic. But if thou hast not the checkered cookbook nor a memory for such things: bring each to a boil, then cover and turn down to simmer. Simmer eggs for 15 minutes, potatoes for 20-25, depending on how large they are.

Thou shalt peel the potatoes and the eggs, unless thou art a wimp, in which case the potatoes shall be peeled before they are boiled, with a knife or peeler instead of with thy wimpy fingernails.

Thou shalt slice them, and shower blessings upon the inventor of the egg-slicer, for it is a nifty gadget and hath much worth.

Thou shalt slice a small bit of onion, so that someone might suspect its presence in thy potato salad, but so that it doth not overpower the rest. Purple or green onions are best so that they may be spied and picked from the actual bites of potato salad by those who like them not.

Thou shalt squirt into thy potato salad a goodly amount of yellow mustard. Thou shalt not get fancy with brown mustard.

Thou shalt dollop in Miracle Whip, in abundance. And thou shalt taste it and add more of one or the other until it is good. And thou shalt salt it with the tiniest bits of salt and sprinkle it with paprika.

Into the potato salad thou shalt not put mayonnaise, yea, under penalty of scorn, for it belongeth not there. And if thou dollopest in the mayonnaise, we shall suspect thee of being the sort of person who pronounceth it with three syllables and spreadeth it on bread, and we shall no more let thee make our sandwiches.

Thou shalt not put other crap into thy potato salad. Thou shalt not add pickles, nor pimentos, nor celery, nor the jalapenos nor the milder fruits of the pepper plants; no, nor shalt thou add basil, nor vinegar (white nor cider), nor dill, though it is a goodly spice, nor shalt thou add anything but the ingredients listed herein, for they go not into potato salad. If thou eatest something cold and good which containeth potatoes but which doth not conform to these commandments, it is no potato salad, but merely a salad containing potatoes.

Thou shalt not heat thy potato salad. Ever.

And if thou followest these commandments, thy potato salad will be pleasing in my sight, but if not, I shall turn from thee and say, "Oh, how nice, potato salad. Oh, look, strawberries!" and shall hare off to a different part of the picnic.