Cook the Story

The Potato Recipe I Tasted Before I Was Born

Today I’ve joined with a group of bloggers to share our favorite comfort foods. My favorite comfort food is a potato recipe that my mom, like her mom before her, makes every year around this time using new baby garden potatoes. Click here to jump down to the recipe. As part of the comfort food extravaganza, we have a comfort-inducing prize pack including a food processor, a slow-cooker, a French oven and a Jam/Jelly Maker. This giveaway has ended. Click here to see the comfort foods that other bloggers are sharing today.

The potato recipe @cookthestory tasted and fell in love with before she was even born. Potatoes in cream with lots and lots of dill.

Do you ever wonder if the foods your mom ate when pregnant influence which foods you love today? Do those foods bring you more comfort than others? I think they must.

I first tasted this potato recipe before I was born.

My mom didn’t tell me that. I just know it’s true because she makes this recipe every August and I was born  in September.

Late in August my mom heads out to the garden and tugs a potato plant from the mud. If 1 to 2 inch globes of starch are clinging to the roots, she knows it’s time. She gathers the potatoes into her basket and then zig zags her way out of the maze of plants, snagging handfuls of dill fronds as she goes.

Mom's new garden potatoes make for the best ever potato recipe

Picture taken by my mom, Phyllis Pittman, late summer 2013.

She brushes the dirt from the potato skins, washes them and then boils them in well-salted water. While the potatoes cook, she sautés onions in too much butter, adds too much cream and then throws in way way way too much fresh dill – more dill than you could ever imagine for a single recipe.

The potatoes are drained and then folded into the oniony, buttery, creamy, dilly dilly dilly mixture.

The potato recipe @cookthestory tasted and fell in love with before she was even born. Potatoes in cream with lots and lots of dill.

That’s how my mom always makes new baby potatoes at the end of summer. And that’s the taste of comfort to me now.

I just realized that my baba used to make this potato recipe too. And since my mom was born in September, I bet that she, like me, first tasted these potatoes before she was born.

This potato recipe stuck with my mom and I’m glad because there are few things in life that bring me as much comfort as a bowl of creamy dilly new potatoes.

4.0 from 1 reviews
New Potatoes with Cream and Lots and Lots and Lots of Dill
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
I don't currently have my own garden and new baby potatoes are hard to come by. I find that small red potatoes are a great substitute. They don't have that earth-tinged just-yanked-from-the-roots taste of new potatoes but they do have the tender skin. And they look really pretty covered in green dill.
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 4-6
  • 2 lbs. new baby potatoes (or small red potatoes), the largest ones cut in half
  • 2 tsp. plus ¼ tsp. salt, divided
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • ⅛ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 cup of dill fronds, chopped (that is equivalent to the fronds from one 1 oz. package of fresh dill, if you, like me, don't happen to have any growing in your garden)
  1. Put the potatoes in a medium saucepan and just cover with cold water. Add 2 teaspoons of the salt and stir. Over high heat, warm to a simmer. Reduce heat to low. Stir and then partially cover the pot. Simmer the potatoes until the are fork tender, 5-8 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add the wipping cream, remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt and the pepper. Stir. Increase the heat to medium and bring the cream up to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and add the dill.
  3. Drain the potatoes and add them to the skillet, using a spoon to turn them over in the cream sauce.

15 Comfort Food Recipes plus a Giveaway of a 12-cup Magimix, 6 Quart Slow Cooker, Le Creuset Dutch Oven and Ball Jam/Jelly Maker, total value $904. September 2013.Here are all the wonderful comfort foods that the other bloggers are sharing today. Don’t forget to scroll down to enter our giveaway for a food processor, a slow-cooker, a French oven and a Jam/Jelly Maker.

from top to bottom, left to right

Chicken and Dumplings from Kokocooks

Mini Chicken Pot Pies from Katie’s Cucina

Smoked Tri Tip Soup from Yellow Bliss Road

Slow Cooker Chili and Cornbread from Clean and Scentsible

Jambalaya Risotto from Sweet C’s Designs

Chicken Tortilla Soup from Craft Quickies

Bacon Meatloaf and Seasoned Potatoes from Sweet Rose Studio

Slow Cooker Pot Roast from A Glimpse Inside

Taco Pie from Balancing Home

Browned Butter Apple Crisp from White House Black Shutters

Caramel Apple Cake from The Lilypad Cottage

Decadent Low Calorie Pumpkin Chai Latte from Ella Claire

Toffee Caramel Apple Cake from A Pumpkin and a Princess

Homemade Donuts from Crazy Little Projects

Comfort Recipes Giveaway: a 12-cup Magimix, 6 Quart Slow Cooker, Le Creuset Dutch Oven and Ball Jam/Jelly Maker, total value $904. September 2013. (This giveaway is now closed) And now for the giveaway! It’s pretty amazing right? One lucky winner will receive:

-A Magimix 3200XL 12-Cup Food Processor in Shiny Chrome. This is a new food processor package with a chrome finish, exclusive to Chefs Catalog, provided by Magimix.

-A KitchenAid Stainless Steel 6-Quart Slow Cooker, provided by Black Gold Farms. Black Gold Farms is a third generation family farm with roots in North Dakota. They have grown to be a trusted and innovative leader in potato production as a grower of chipping potatoes for potato chip companies around the country and now fresh potatoes for you – including their new line of Red Potatoes featuring McCormick spices for roasting.

-A Le Creuset 5.5 Quart Round French Oven.

-A Ball Jam/Jelly Maker, provided by Chef Central.


And now scroll down to the comments and tell me, is there a particularly comforting potato recipe (or any other recipe) that you’re pretty sure you tasted before you were born? Do you think the foods your mother ate before you were born influence your tastes today?

65 Responses to “The Potato Recipe I Tasted Before I Was Born”
  1. Tracey says:

    I found this recipe when I was looking for a way to use all the fresh dill I have in my garden. It’s simply delicious! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Dina says:

    it sounds delish!
    Dina recently posted: Two for Tuesday: San Gennaro Cannoli

  3. Suzanne says:

    I love potatoes and dill! The only potato salad I make has tons of fresh dill in it, as well as some chopped dill pickle.
    Suzanne recently posted: Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

  4. Anny says:

    I am sure I tasted just regular boiled potatoes with gravy before I was born. Also many, many authentic Danish Pastries. I was Born in Denmark, to Danish parents. I am also sure there were many items from smorgasbords I tastes too.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Anny, those sound like wonderful first tastes to have. I’ve always wanted to try a traditional smorgasbord. I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of all those tasty foods.

  5. These potatoes look fantastic, Christine! Love that this is one of those passed-down family recipes – they are the BEST!! Thanks for sharing. :)

  6. Melissa says:

    Hash browns! With salt and pepper and melted cheese. Something so simple and perfect and yep. Pretty sure I ate this before I was born, lol.

  7. Patte Evans says:

    Potato Surprise or Cheesy Potato Casserole – that’s what I love.

  8. nicole says:

    Yummy potato soup! I’m sure I tasted that before I was born. Still a favorite of mine today. Great giveaway!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Potato soup is one of my favorite comfort foods too. I make it the way my mom does, with bacon. You put cubed potatoes onto boil in salted water. Then you fry chopped bacon and then add flour to the bacon fat that is rendered. Cook for a minute or two. WHen the potatoes are fork tender you pour the bacon-flour mixture into a pot, right in there with the water and the potatoes. Stir, taste, season and eat! Not much better than that. Come to think of it, I haven’t had that soup in ages. I just might make some this weekend.

  9. Elisabeth says:

    Potatoes are one of my fave foods, period. But I’ve always loved mashed potatoes; we had them quite a bit growing up (and not the fake from-a-box kind). Now I invariably add a bit of garlic and cheddar cheese for a little extra to my meals.

    And I do believe that there is a connection between what our moms ate while we were in utero. When she was pregnant with my younger sister, she couldn’t stand potatoes or carrots. To this day, my sister can’t stand those foods, either.
    Elisabeth recently posted: Chocolate Mint Puppy Chow

    • Christine Pittman says:

      That is so interesting about your sister! I’m going to ask my mom if there were any foods she disliked when pregnant and see if they match any of my dislikes. How fun! (Your mashed potatoes sound delicious. I love them too, plain with butter, salt and pepper or loaded up with other things. As long as they’re soft and potatoey, I’m a happy girl).

  10. Noreen says:

    Shepard pie, my grandmother and mom used to make it all the time
    Noreen recently posted: WW: Open Fire Hydrant

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Here’s something interesting. My mom never made shepard’s pie. Not sure why not. It just wasn’t something that I had growing up. But now I’m married to a Brit and so that is his comfort food. And it very very quickly became mine too. We have it often in the fall and winter.

  11. Beth says:

    My mom’s potato soup was the comfort food of choice when it was cold outside!!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I adore potato soup. It’s so warm and filling and soft. I can’t wait for colder weather so I can make up a batch.

  12. ligia says:

    my mom makes baby new potatoes with sour cream sauce and dill..they’re delicious and really really creamy. probably they taste the same, ts just wth sour cream.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I bet they’re very similar. I’m going to try making them with sour cream because I always always have that on hand and rarely have the whipping cream. It would be super convenient if I could get that comfort without needing a special ingredient. Thanks for the idea!!

  13. Dawna says:

    My Mother’s Potato pancakes with Applesauce. Odd because she is half Greek but I LOVE her potato pancakes.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      What sort of potato pancake does your mom make? Are they the really crunchy kind or the softer kind that has a bit of a batter to them? My mom and Baba made the latter and I love them that way, with sour cream instead of apple sauce. But I also do the crispy ones for me and my husband if we’re having smoked salmon for supper. A great pair!

  14. Melissa G says:

    I’m not sure about potato recipes but my mom did eat a ton of slim jims and chocolate ice cream. I think it’s totally influenced my taste because I love both today for sure. She does have an amazing augratin potato recipe that she makes now that I love…its so sinful, lots and lots of heavy cream and cheese…yum!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      That augratin recipe sounds amazing! Any chance she’d share the recipe with me? I’d love to check it out. That’s funny about the slim jims and chocolate ice cream. I need to ask my mom what foods she loved when pregnant to see if it influenced me at all.

  15. Karen I says:

    My mother loved mashed and scalloped potatoes and I have a special fondness for them. My daughter adores Mexican food; when I was pregnant I desired Taco Bell bean burritos.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Wow! I love that your pregnancy cravings are showing up in your daughter’s food preferences. How cool is that? (I love mashed and scaolloped potatoes too. I haven’t done scalloped potatoes in awhile. Thanks for the reminder of a true favorite dish!)

  16. Allie R. says:

    Not so much for me, but my son definitely came out of the womb with a taste for Indian and spicy food. By 8 months he was eating finely shredded curry chicken and now at 4 years old regularly eats things like Sriracha flavored potato chips. I had major Indian and hot wing cravings while I was pregnant and ate both frequently.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I can’t believe your son likes such spicy stuff. We tried giving our kids bits of spice when very young hoping they would acquire a taste for it but no dice. My son even complains that garlic is spicy. We keep trying with subtle little bits hoping that it will work someday. Now I’m wondering if I should have had more spicy food when pregnant. I had such bad heartburn though that I can’t imagine it was appealing at the time. Oh well!

  17. I love potatoes, and I love dill. My kids refuse to eat potatoes so I don’t make this often, but this one seems worthy. :)
    Kristin @ Yellow Bliss Road recently posted: Smoked Tri Tip Soup with Veggies and a HUGE Kitchen Cookware Giveaway!!! ($900 value!!!)

    • Christine Pittman says:

      My kids don’t like potatoes much either, except idmf I roll mash into balls and make snowmen. And fries. With this recipe I rinse them and then cut them into mini fries. They eat them if I also give them ketchup *sigh*.

  18. Amy B. says:

    Cream chipped beef. It’s an odd thing, but I love it. couple pieces of toast and a bowl of CCB to dip ‘em in. Deeelicious!

  19. lauren says:

    cheesy potatoes… sour cream, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, chives.. mmmmm

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Lauren, That sounds amazing. In high school one of my best friend’s mons used to make twice baked pitatoes with that cream cheesy mixture. Soooooo good!

  20. C A Franks says:

    Has to be mesquite grilled beef fajitas on homemade flour tortillas with guacamole. My mouth waters just thinking about it.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I only ever made homemade tortillas once. They were so amazing but I found it time-consuming. I wonder if practice would make it quicker. They sure were good!

  21. Megan Schrier says:

    What a great giveaway! I would love to win!!

  22. This looks SO GOOD, Christine! Especially the lots of butter, lots of cream, and lots of dill part!! :)
    Brenda @ a farmgirl’s dabbles recently posted: Chocolate Chip Granola Bars {giveaway!}

  23. Karen Lynch says:

    Beef stroganoff, my childhood favorite.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Oh Karen! I love beef stroganoff. I turn to it all the time for a comforting dish in the winter. I can’t wait for it to cool off a bit so I can dive into some.

  24. Dawn DeVinney says:

    Had to be French Fries … LOL … ’cause I am most addicted to French Fries. Steak Fries, Waffle Fries, Shoestring Fries, Crinkle Fries…

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Dawn, That’s too funny! I love fries too, and almost all kinds. But my favorite are the homemade fries with the skins on served in a paper bag from a chip truck. I don’t find them in as many places as I used to but when I do, I eat enough to make up for it!

  25. BiteMe says:

    Sweet, shoyu glazed potatoes. Breaks my heart thinking about it.

  26. faleen fedol says:

    potato latkes

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I love latkes too! Do you have them with apple sauce or with sour cream? I know people who do both. My family always did sour cream.

  27. Paula says:

    What a lovely post about your Mom and her wonderful potato recipe!

  28. Jean says:

    My mom’s roasted parmesan potatoes. New potatoes, butter, salt, paremesan cheese and fresh Italian parsley. Season with fresh ground pepper and you’re in potato heaven!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I am so so so going to try that. Don’t be surprised if a version shows up on this blog at some point this winter. They sound so so good!

  29. Katie says:

    This recipe looks and sounds divine! Potatoes are the ultimate comfort food!
    Katie recently posted: Chicken Pot Pies in Puff Pastry Shells + $900 Giveaway

  30. Shana says:

    I’m convinced that my mother ate a boatload of homemade mashed potatoes when pregnant with me, bc I cannot get enough of them, ever.

    I also blame her for my love of matzo ball soup.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I didn’t have matzo ball soup growing up but have become a huge fan recently. There’s a Jewish restaurant near us that we go to quite often. I love their soup so much that I sometimes even order it for breakfast (with a corned beef sandwich). My husband thinks I’m nuts. But those matzo balls are so comforting and the broth must have schmaltz in it. I just can’t get enough of it! I’ve never tried making it though. Do you now of a good recipe?

  31. emily smith says:

    apparently my mom ate a lot of Mexican and Chinese…no potato stories that I’ve heard of!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      Do you love Mexican and Chinese foods now? Well, weird question, I guess. I mean, who doesn’t love Mexican and Chinese food? lol. But do you extra love them, do you think?

  32. Michelle says:

    My mom actually makes an amazing potato salad — it’s pretty simple and just involves dill, mayo, egg, and Greek seasoning. I have yet to try it (because I’m pretty sure I would eat it all in one sitting), but she made it for my kids last week and even THEY couldn’t get enough so I’m going to have to replicate it soon :)
    Michelle recently posted: Why New Runners Inspire Me

  33. Oh, I love this. I am convinced I’m obsessed with tuna melts because my mother ate them by the pound when she was pregs with me- mercury in tuna be damned, apparently, so knock on wood :)
    I also believe a potato salad can never have too much dill or butter, so at least your mom was imparting subconscious wisdom while you were in there :)
    Ruthy @ Omeletta recently posted: Table Scraps 9-7-13

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