When your mashed or scalloped potatoes dish, potato soup or potato salad comes out too salty, all is not lost -- you have options for salvaging the dish. Add flavorful ingredients to dilute the salt and mask its flavor. Plus, in some dishes, you can actually remove the salt itself. For potato soup or potato salad,
increase the entire recipe
, leaving out the salt, either by doubling all the ingredients or increasing them by one-third or one-fourth. Or, change the character of the recipe by increasing or adding just one ingredient:
- Add one or more potatoes or a can of well-rinsed white beans to potato soup.
- Cook one to four additional potatoes to add to potato salad or mashed potatoes.
- Add more celery or a few more hard-boiled eggs to potato salad.
Sometimes, it's actually possible to remove some of the salt in your potato dish. If your potato soup is the type with chunks of potatoes instead of a creamed soup, ladle out some of the salty broth and replace it with a salt-free variety. Food with strong tastes, such as those with acidic, tart, hot, or sweet flavors, distract your taste buds from focusing on the saltiness in a dish. Try these techniques on your potato dishes:
- Sprinkle chopped fresh herbs, such as chives or parsley, over salty scalloped potatoes, mashed potatoes or potato salad.
- Strew chopped dried tomatoes over scalloped potatoes. Both their sweetness and their acidity mask the salt.
- Add lemon juice or vinegar to salty potato soup or potato salad, or add white wine to potato soup.
- Sprinkle a bit of chili powder or hot sauce into potato soup.
- Add prepared horseradish, finely minced garlic or mashed roasted garlic to salty mashed potatoes.
- Add whole cream to mashed potatoes. The added fat makes the salt recede into the background.
- Add a sweet potato or roasted carrot to creamed potato soup.
Use your salty potato dish as an incentive to improve your cooking skills in the future. Follow the advice of Daniel Gritzer, writing at the Food and Wine website: Trust your intuition; refrain from adding all the salt a recipe calls for if it seems to you like too much; and
taste as you go
, adding the salt called for in a recipe in small increments and tasting after each addition.