Dagmar’s Specialties – Rio Rancho, New Mexico

Dagmar’s Specialties in Rio Rancho

In her last Facebook post, Dagmar Gertrude Ingeborg Schulze Marshall Mondragon remained optimistic about making a full recovery from the most recent of the many recent health woes that plagued her otherwise rich and wonderful life. Dagmar refused to be defined by those health woes. Instead, we’ll remember her as not only an extraordinary chef and baker, but as one of the kindest, most loving and optimistic souls to ever grace our Earthly plane. Dagmar was devoted to her customers.  She passed away on  25 February 2023.

Michael Almanzar, a long time friend of Dagmar’s who is affectionately known as Dagmar’s “Brother from another Mother” is the new Owner/Operator of Dagmar’s!   Dagmar’s reopened on August 25, 2023.  We’re happy to report that under Michael’s stewardship, this outstanding German bakery hasn’t skipped a beat.  Though we miss the beautiful baker, we’re gladdened that her delicious legacy lives on.

The Wonderful Dagmar Schulze


Until Dagmar Mondragon launched her first German restaurant in Albuquerque back in 1996, many of us knew very little about German cuisine in general and baking in particular.  The only German baker with which some of us were acquainted was the wicked witch who planned to bake Hansel and Gretel in her oven.  And the only German pastry with which we were familiar was the gingerbread house in which that witch lived.  Most of us believed German chocolate cake originated somewhere in Germany.  Heck, if it wasn’t for Hogan’s Heroes, we wouldn’t know the difference between pumpernickel and weinerschnitzel.

Having frequented every one of the German restaurants Dagmar has launched in the nearly a quarter-century in which she’s served the Duke City metropolitan area, I’ve become besotted by her baked breads, delighted by her desserts, captivated by her cooking and grown very fond of the remarkable, larger-than-life woman named Dagmar.  Her inspirational story is replete with all the elements and themes that make a great movie though if you weren’t already acquainted with Dagmar’s story, you might not believe how anyone could surmount so many challenges and remain the warm, perpetually smiling lady who greets you cheerfully when you step into her bakery.

The Irrepressible Dagmar at home in the kitchen (Photo Courtesy of Dagmar)

While most movies center around one theme, you would be hard-pressed to pigeonhole the Dagmar Mondragon story into one central motif.   The most prominent theme would probably have to be “overcoming adversity.”  Dagmar has experienced much more adversity–both in business and in her personal life–than most of us can fathom.  Through it all, she’s remained resolute, determined, unflappable…an embodiment for the axiom “you can’t keep a good woman down” (another movie theme).

Even before launching her first restaurant, adversity tried to bar the door to Dagmar’s dreams. Armed with tremendous talent and self-confidence, but with no start-up capital, Dagmar somehow managed to secure a deposit for her first restaurant.  Alas, the San Mateo location in which she opened her start-up was broken into several times.  Dagmar then moved to a new location where she introduced Albuquerque to the German food with which she grew up.  Not long after she relocated, she suffered the first of two heart attacks she would survive before triple bypass surgery rectified the issues with her heart. Two days after surgery, she returned to her restaurant. Among her first customers were the doctors who had performed the surgery.

Amazing Brötchen and Braunschweiger

Over the next nearly two decades, Dagmar would go on to share the cuisine of her maternal homeland throughout the Duke City and Rio Rancho in four different locations. In that time, she’s overcome a litany of challenges and health issues, any of which would have broken a lesser person. Her restaurants were burgled on multiple occasions, once by a ravenous robber who devoured her pastries. She’s experienced more equipment issues than Wile E. Coyote. Sewer back-up issues at one restaurant obfuscated the enticing aromas that make dining at her restaurants an olfactory-arousing joy.

Sometime after her fourth move, Dagmar was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Despite the removal of 22 pounds of mass, she literally went straight from the hospital to her restaurant. In 2012, she launched a small eatery in Rio Rancho while continuing to operate her Albuquerque establishment. Once again, cruel fate stepped in, this time sapping her of the passion and drive she had always had for cooking and baking. The culprit this time was systemic lupus which rendered her in perpetual pain. She closed her restaurants, put everything in storage and moved in with her ailing mother.

Cherry Strudel

For five years, Dagmar worked on recovering her health. Over time, she regained the passion and vitality that had sustained her through so many challenges. She decided her most recent instantiation of Dagmar’s Delectables would reside in Rio Rancho and would focus on German pastries, particularly strudels. Dagmar’s opened its doors in July, 2019 in the 1,300-square-foot Trinity Plaza space which previously housed Gluten-Free Gourmet. It’s a smaller space than some of her previous restaurants. Though it isn’t set up as a sit-down restaurant, you can pick up daily breakfast and lunch specials as well as those incomparable pastries and breads. A small section of the space is reserved for comestibles such as German mustards and curry ketchup.

According to a study in the journal Emotion, the more adversity in life a person has experienced, the more compassion they tend to feel and show toward others.  The first time we visited Dagmar in her new Rio Rancho location, we were reminded why we had missed her so much–and it wasn’t solely because of her baking and cooking prowess.  In Dagmar, we’re witness to the rare type of hospitality and customer orientation that bespeaks of a beautiful heart.  Dagmar is a very kind person, the type of which makes the best of friends and neighbors.

Apple Strudel


But this isn’t a review of Dagmar’s life.  It’s a review of her bakery (though it could be said the two are inextricable).  If you’re not already acquainted with German baked goods or you believe French bakeries are the be-all and end-all, it might surprise you to learn that CNN’s Travel website contends “German bread is the best in the world.”  Having enjoyed freshly baked baguettes, buttery croissants and crusty loaves of French bread (as well as  rich, creamy gateaus; decadent eclairs and other pastries) in my travels across France, I’m more than inclined to agree.  One visit to Dagmar’s will convince you, too.

10 November 2023: While Dagmar’s pumpernickel and rye breads are fabulous, our favorite is the amazing brötchen, an incomparably wunderbar white bread roll.  Living in England, we easily came to love the simplicity of brötchen with butter and thick apricot jam, a welcome departure from the American tradition of piling on a hillside of ingredients ala Dagwood Bumstead.  We also loved the richness of brötchen with creamy French butter and sharp English Cheddar, but our favorite was brötchen with braunschweiger which wasn’t particularly easy to get in England.  Braunschweiger, a soft, creamy and spreadable liver sausage has a distinctive peppery liver-based flavor that just seems tailor-made for brötchen.  It’s only fitting that the brand Dagmar offers is Berliner, named for her birthplace.

Coconut Cream Strudel

The American comedy series Hogan’s Heroes introduced viewers to Sergeant Hans Schultz, a befuddled, obese, always lazy Luftwaffe serviceman who frequently falls asleep at his post and often chooses to look the other way, uttering one of his trademark phrases: “I see nothing,” “I hear nothing,” and “I know nothing!” One thing Schultz could never look away from was strudel, the irresistible pastry consisting of several layers of thin dough filled with a fruity or creamy deliciousness.  The American prisoners-of-war frequently used strudel to bribe Schultz into divulging information.

12 May 2020: Sergeant Schultz’s very favorite strudel was apple strudel.  It’s my favorite, too, but only the way Dagmar’s bakes it.  The defining characteristic of strudel dough is that it should be stretched very thin — literally almost paper-thin and transparent and there should be layer upon layer of it.  Between those layers Dagmar nestles tart, firm baking apples which are chopped and mixed with just a bit of cinnamon.  While some versions of apple strudel are drizzled with a creamy frosting or sprinkled with powdered sugar, Dagmar tops hers with large granule pearl sugar.  You can bribe me with Dagmar’s apple strudel any time.

Soiree of Strudel: Blueberry, Apricot and Cherry Chile

10 November 2023: The Republic of Texas claims strudel as one of its official state pastries, likely because of the many communities of German immigrants who settled in the hill country west of Austin and San Antonio.  My Kim loves Dagmar’s cherry strudel so much she could qualify to be a Texan.  What she loves most about it is there’s cherry in every bite–not that annoying thick, syrupy fruit filling you find in some pies, but whole, tart cherries.  Few things in life are as satisfying as cherry strudel after a cup (or six) of hot coffee on a lockdown day.

12 May 2020: In an interview with the Albuquerque Journal, Dagmar revealed she plans to offer 65 different strudel types.  In my wildest dreams I had no idea there were 65 types of strudel.  For Sergeant Schultz, that would be like strudel heaven.  Coconut cream strudel is a recent revelation and departure from the fruit-filled strudels we usually prefer.  As an aficionado of coconut cream pie, it doesn’t pain me to declare coconut cream strudel far superior, but it does pain me that it took me so long to discover it.  Another favorite find is the raspberry-lemon strudel, a luscious tart amalgam of pure decadence.  Then there’s Dagmar’s apricot strudel, a mouth-watering gem showcasing the musky tartness of apricot.

Wurst brotchen with German Potato Salad

12 May 2020: While Dagmar’s doesn’t serve a full dine-in menu as at some of her previous restaurants, she does offer small breakfast and lunch options so good you’ll rue ever having settled for fast food alternatives.  Best of all, she prepares them before your very eyes.  The canvas for some of her delectable lunches is the aforementioned brötchen we love…and few things go as well on brötchen as a good wurst.  In Germany, it’s said that “wurst comes to wurst,” an idiom regarding the popularity of sausages.  Dagmar’s bratwurst brötchen is superb, a thick sausage scored diagonally to allow excess fat to escape.  Spread a little of the medium-spiced mustard on the brötchen and you’ll enjoy a sandwich which should rival the hotdog in your estimation.

12 May 2020:  Another superb lunch option is the schnitzel brötchen, another exemplar of deliciousness crafted on the versatile German bread roll.  The schnitzel is thinly cut, a pounded and lightly seasoned pork tenderloin with a golden-hued breading.  As with the bratwurst brötchen, the schnitzel extends beyond the brötchen.  German mustard lends a little assertiveness to this sandwich.  Both brötchen lunch offerings were accompanied by the very best German potato salad we’ve ever had.  German potato salad is wholly unlike the mayonnaise-based potato salad popular across the fruited plain.  It’s warm and tangy courtesy of vinegar specked with bacon.

Schnitzel brotchen with German Potato Salad

21 October 2020: Make sure to follow Dagmar’s Facebook page to find out when the bakery is offering such German delights as Sauerbraten, Roulanden and Hungarian goulash not to mention pretzels, red cabbage and mashed potatoes.  These exceptional entrees will take you back to the days when Dagmar had a full-service restaurant and served entrees the type and quality of which you have to go to Germany to find.  If you’re in a hurry, there’s also no better place for lunch.  Picture a sandwich brimming with such meats as turkey, roast beef, schnitzel and wurst.

The turkey sandwich (pictured below) is served with German potato salad, potato chips and a coconut macaroon.  Just look at how much turkey is packed into that soft, delicious yeasty roll.  A slice of American cheese, lettuce and mustard round it out.  It would help to be able to increase the width of your jaw (or “gape” as it is technically known) like a python would because this is one towering, overstuffed sandwich.  Best of all, you’ll pay less for this sandwich than you would for a fast food burger and you’ll get a much better meal.

Turkey Sandwich with German Potato Salad and Macaroon

17 December 2020:  Perhaps no country on Mother Earth celebrates Christmas as richly as Germany does.  Celebrations begin in mid-November when Christmas markets (such as the magical market in Kaiserslautern) begin appearing with their twinkling lights beckoning and aisles of wooden stalls hawking seasonal wares as market-goers sip mugs brimming with hot beverages.  Culture Trip contends there are some fifteen Christmas traditions only Germans will understand.  Among those sacrosanct traditions is Stollen, a terrific Christmas bread Dagmar has brought to Rio Rancho.

Christmas Stollen, known in Germany as Christstollen, are yeast breads baked with dried fruits, candied citrus peel, nuts and spices coated with white icing sugar.  Don’t dare call it a “German fruitcake!” It is most assuredly not a fruitcake–and not just because it’s a bread, not a cake.  Stollen are dense yet light, buttery, yeasty and not nearly as sweet as fruitcake.  Dagmar’s prepares versions with or without marzipan, essentially a< paste of sugar and almonds.  We enjoy Stollen either way, but lean toward having it with marzipan.  Dagmar’s rendition is moist, flaky, aromatic and oh so delicious.  Give fruitcake to people you dislike.  Give Stollen to people you love.

A Beautiful Christmas Gift – Stollen with Marzipan

19 October 2021: Europeans, it seems, like “rolled” meat-based foods.  Sicilians, for example, are fond of braciola, a hearty dish of thinly sliced meats rolled with cheese and bread crumbs and fried.  In Italy the rolled meat dish of choice is Pancetta Arrotolata, rolled and cured bacon.  Then there’s the catch-all “roulade,” which is traditionally found in various European cuisines.  Derived from the French word “rouler,” meaning “to roll,” roulade is a generic term for any filled rolled dish.  My favorite version of a roulade dish is German’s Rouladen.

Dagmar offers a pre-packaged Rouladen dinner you can prepare at home in mere minutes.  A roll of thinly sliced beef sheathing onion, mustard and pickles drizzled in gravy awaits you four minutes after you put it into the microwave.  The beef is tender and moist with a mouth-watering gravy that accentuates its beefiness.  The Rouladen is served with spätzle, a type of small noodle and a wonderful sweet and sour red cabbage.  It is wholly unlike Chinese sweet and sour in that German red cabbage is typically sautéed with butter, sprinkled with sugar and vinegar and simmered until tender.  You can eat it either hot or cold, our preference being hot.


19 October 2021: Everything you ever wanted to know about Hungarian goulash was brought to light in a 2019 article by Saveur which declared goulashthe world’s most famous stew.”  According to Saveur “This formerly humble shepherd’s soup likely dates back to the 9th century, in the earliest days of the nation’s history.”   Over time, the hearty, comforting, soul-warming stew made its way from a peasant dish of the masses onto the tables of lesser nobility.  Beyond being Hungary’s national dish and a favorite of Eastern European nations, goulash is a transcendent dish which a 1969 Gallup poll discovered was “one of the five most popular meat dishes in the United States.”

We don’t often see Hungarian goulash on the menu of restaurants in the Land of Enchantment.  We see plenty of stews, the “cousin” of goulash, but not true Hungarian goulash.  Thank goodness for Dagmar.  Her version doesn’t have the rich broth or profusion of vegetables of many “traditional” goulash plates, but it does have three of the defining elements of a great goulash–Hungarian paprika, braised beef and noodles.  Hungarian paprika traditionally comes in eight different flavor profiles–ranging from mild and bright red to spicy, pungent, and pale orange. Dagmar uses a variety which has a pungent pepper flavor and sweetness.  It brightens and ameliorates the flavor of her goulash so much that it’s easy to see why it’s such a popular and comforting stew.

Hungarian Goulash

10 November 2023: When I contemplate just how different my Kim and I are when it comes to our food choices, it’s not culinary science that comes to mind but orinthology, the scientific study of birds.  According to Lyric, “Not only is colorful plumage a way for male birds to compete for mates, it is also a way for males to compete for territory. In the battle for territory amongst birds, males can show off their flashy feathers to signal that they have occupancy over a certain area. Probably one of the most widely accepted reasons for the dull feathers of many female birds is that they need to be camouflaged in order to avoid a predator attack while nesting. If females that nest in the open were brightly colored, both they themselves and their nesting flock would be incredibly vulnerable to predators.”

Our food choices are analogous to the plumage of birds  (and maybe this is a stretch) in that my Kim prefers an unadorned sandwich to one adorned with condiments and sundry ingredients.  My preference is the latter–lots of stuff between bread.  This was in evidence during a November, 2023 visit to Dagmar’s.  While I opted for a Reuben towering with corned beef and adornment, she ordered a ham and cheese sandwich.  Then because there was more than one ingredient on the sandwich, she gave the cheese (American) to The Dude, our debonair dachshund.  As a plain ham sandwich, this is a real winner.  Thin shards of ham nestled between soft brotchen made her very happy.  Her colorfully plumed husband would have added sweet pickles, horseradish, hot peppers and at least three types of cheese.

Ham and Cheese on brotchen

10 November 2023:  Dagmar’s Reuben, aptly christened the “Famous Reuben Delight” is the answer to a prayer–that this denizen of the City of Vision wouldn’t have to travel twenty-plus miles for a Reuben worthy of that distance.  This Reuben may not currently be famous, but it should be.  Piled generously between two slices of marble rye is a generous amount of corn beef, Swiss cheese sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing.  The Reuben is served with fried potatoes and a single pickle spear.

In January, 2024, Dagmar’s plans an expansion.  A back wall will be knocked down to allow for in-restaurant dining.  Picnic tables are available outdoors.  Since Rio Rancho had just experienced its first “snowfall” of 2023, we didn’t avail ourselves of al fresco dining.  Instead we ferried our bounty home, some 20 minutes away.  It’s hard to extrapolate how good the Reuben would have been had we been able to eat it immediately after orderint it, but the fact that it was still quite good speaks volumes.  It’s one of the best Reubens we’ve had in New Mexico!

Reuben with Fried Potatoes

Dagmar’s story has all the elements needed for Oscar consideration, but her legacy is far from finished. Her protege and successor Michael Alamanzar has guests to win over and feed, friends to make and strudel to bake.

Dagmar’s Specialties
2704 Southern Blvd, S.E.
Rio Rancho, New Mexico
(505) 891-7995
Facebook Page
LATEST VISIT: 10 November 2023
COST: $$
BEST BET: Apple Strudel, Cherry Strudel, brotchen, Coconut Cream Strudel, Braunschweiger, Wurst brotchen, Schnitzel brotchen, German Potato Salad, Apricot Strudel, Raspberry-Lemon Strudel, Curry Ketchup, Turkey Sandwich, Macaroon, Christmas Stollen With Marzipan, Rouladen, Hungarian Goulash, Reuben, Ham Sandwich
REVIEW #1159

32 thoughts on “Dagmar’s Specialties – Rio Rancho, New Mexico

  1. no reviews in ten days

    getting worried about you again, Gil

    You have to eat more often than once every 10 days 🙂

    go out and get you some bbq nachos

    1. Thank you, TJ. After a delightful lunch at Joe’s Pasta House on Friday I got a flu shot. It worked. I now have the flu: no energy, teeth hurt, general malaise. I appreciate you checking up on me.

      I also appreciate you submitting a comment. I’ve visited some great restaurants recently, but…crickets. Maybe comments would increase if I eat at Olive Garden and Chili’s.

      1. Hey there Gil

        I never get flu shots for exactly that reason – I get the flu when I do 🙂

        That said, I didnt get the Rona til well after I had three Rona shots

        Since I dont live anywhere near the area you cover, I rarely have a comment to contribute other than the occasional grammar and spelling and pointing out that a statement saying eatery x doesnt serve fries shouldnt be accompanied with a half dozen pics where fries are depicted 🙂

        I love reading your stuff, tho, and look forward to checking a few of these spots off the bucket list. Sadies tops that list, with Sante Fe Bite and Sparkys close behind.

        1. Sadie’s is renowned for the piquancy of its chile. Even some native New Mexicans can’t handle it. Fire-eaters like Captain Tuttle and I have no problem with Sadie’s chile, but our taste buds are coated with asbestos.

      2. I know I’ve been waiting patiently for 10+ years for the Olive Garden review…it’s literally the only reason I read the blog… 😉

      3. I wouldn’t be concerned about the crickets, Gil. It’s been a dreary few weeks between the time change and the weather. Every evening I’m still surprised at how early it is when it gets dark. Then we went from desert heat to lovely Fall weather to a deep freeze. There have been several days I’ve been tempted to go out to eat, but end up rummaging through the refrigerator instead. In addition, from the perspective of someone who lives on the southern end of town, several of your latest reviews have been in Rio Rancho. One in Taos. So don’t get your knickers in a twist, mate. We’ll all be gnoshing again soon and we’ll always consult our favorite sesquipedalian sybarite when we do. Pip pip old bean; put those spaghettios back on the shelf.

      1. Never met the lady, alas. My step-granny was FOB German so I have fond memories of most of that cuisine. Wish there was a good German eatery in central ABQ. (Red Rock has some dishes.)

          1. It means fresh off the boat, as in Ellis Island, where she came through. Nothing pejorative or to do with Germans, specifically.

            Think she came over right after WWII and I grew up with her. Hard woman, but a good sense of humor and she sure could cook. I went on to have a longtime German-heritage girlfriend and then a wife. Neither could cook a lick.

  2. Dagmar’s mother and staff would like to keep the bakery going, but they need support to get through the transition (continue paying employees and suppliers while the estate is processed so bank accounts can be accessed, and so forth.)

    A gofundme has been set up. More information here:

    Please help keep Dagmar’s going! It adds so much to the community!

    1. Thank you for posting this, Julie. I’m very happy to hear that Dagmar’s mother and staff want to keep her bakery going. It would be such a tribute to her. You’re right that it adds so much to the community. I’ll do my part to help.

    2. From their Facebook page

      “We’re re-opening soon, can’t wait to see everyone! We had SO many people reach out throughout these difficult times. Many, many appreciations in Dagmar’s honor…We’re keeping everything the way Dagmar had it when she left this place. The staff, trained by Dagmar is happy to be back and can’t wait to serve everyone in this wonderful community!”

  3. I just checked Dagmar’s Facebook page and she has Christmas stollen available now – along with her strudels that she’ll gift wrap – and they look beautiful.  She also has European butter cookies and Linzer cookies. That lady is all about German Christmas goodies.

  4. 1. Gil, as to your noting Curry Ketchup- I became aware of this condiment from the Grocery side of Dubbel Dutch, Den., about 2013.
    2. At about the same time, Denver’s Gabby Gourmet, (Ms) Pat Miller joked- eating Chinese food it’s said you’re hungry an hour later. While in eating German food you’re hungry 6 days later

  5. Per Gil’s recommendation, I had this delicious coconut cream strudel! I wanted the closest thing to custard filled layered in pastry dough. Is there schnitzel made with chicken and not pork? Might make for a good picnic lunch during these COVID times…

  6. Indeed, a shoppe on the diminutive, non-commodious side (always wanted to find use for that word, “capacious”, but this was not it! Anyway, there are displays of YumYums including bread; refrigerated stuff like potato salad, liver sausage; and old-world china, with some seats for food-prep waiting.
    Had the Schnitzel sandwich yesterday. Alas, would prefer that instead of the one large and one smaller piece, that the big one, which indeed overlaps the bun, just be in a larger bun and maybe with a tad of a sauce. Would I redo? Yes and especially for Dagmar’s version of the potato salad. While typically I’d favor my Mom’s mayo, however this was spiced up was quite enticing for a change of pace…wonder if it holds up better at summer picnics. In any event (and as per my avian-like appetite, I enjoyed my leftover schnitzel just a few hours later as my supper, albeit in bread.
    Also got me a blueberry strudel! If I were European, I might say a tad ‘dear’ IMHO, but…this was no ordinary Pop Tart. First of all, it is a beautiful looking creation. Anticipating the innards might be a bit “cloying”, I began with just a half. Biting through the flaky shell, I was pleasantly surprised the flavorfulness of the blueberry was predominant with but a hint of sweetness.
    ~ My biggest regret? I missed the Lady of the Bakery who was out running some errands. In terms of full disclosure, I must admit that I had a childhood memory of a tv show of the ’50s where a guy named Jerry Lester fostered the acting career of a gal he named Dagmar, e.g.  https://tinyurl.com/y8tcru9d, who is reported to have been one of the first major female stars of television and who Liberace reportedly said gave him his first break. (For those who aren’t of an age to remember the fashion-setting Polack, here’s a memory https://tinyurl.com/k2s4n23.)
    Of import: If I heard the mask-wearing waitguy correctly, they may be doing away with the landline and using Dagmar’s cell number: 615-5651 for contacting.  For the time being, they are doing 10-2. I found the easiest way to find the site was looking for the complex https://tinyurl.com/ydd8rb2m  which is a tad west of Golf Course Rd. on the south side of Southern.Guten Appetit!

  7. It’s no wonder that folks are so happy to see Dagmar back in business. I must say that her strudels look more enticing than nearly any strudel I ever encountered in Germany – and to be perfectly honest, I rarely turned my back on one even if it appeared somewhat mediocre. Dagmar surely has a light hand with pastry and her creativity is boundless – that coconut cream strudel is pure genius. I wonder if she’ll be making any of the savory vegetable-based strudels or meat strudels (AKA fleischstrudel).

    I took a look at Dagmar’s on face book and noted that she is also now offering what she calls German almond horns or mandelhornchen, a delectable marzipan cookie dipped in chocolate. For anyone who loves almond, this is a treat not to be missed.

  8. I must try Dagmar’s German potato salad and would be curious to find out her recipe and preferred potato selection. It may be unmannerly of me to say but I have always fancied the German version to the eggy mayonnaise style version commonly found in restaurants and delis.

    My own version at home features a rainbow medley of fingerling potatoes, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, mustard, chopped green onion and tidbits of pan-heated Guanciale (that’s cured hog jowl to you vegan bloggers) that is liberally sprinkled throughout with a reckless amount of salt.

    1. Tom, your version of German potato salad sounds good and so does Dagmar’s. Having spent considerable time in Germany, I found that “German potato salad” depends a lot upon the region and certainly on the cook. Like “American potato salad” prepared with mayo, there are countless variations and in Northern Germany, they are apt to use mayo. I found this blog reference which goes into great detail: https://germangirlinamerica.com/german-style-potato-salad-recipes/

      1. Becky, thanks for the link to this great German recipe blog. Funny, blogger says, “German Potato Salad is clearly regional. Northern Germans tend to use Mayonnaise, while Southern Germans stand by Vinegar. I have only been to southern German (mainly Bavaria) several times and I must have assimilated the southern vinegar preference because that’s how I do it.

        It would be interesting to research if the preferred German potato salad recipe in America (which I think is Mayo based) was influenced by immigrants that largely came from northern Germany rather than southern. You got any idea?

        This book looks interesting if one is ready to commit to German cuisine in his or her home:


        117 ratings since publishing in 2018 with mostly five stars.

        1. Tom, I do believe that immigrants from Northern Germany are responsible for the introduction of “American potato salad” but the story is a bit more complicated. From most accounts, it was the French who originally “invented” mayonnaise, for which recipes began to appear in French cookbooks in the 18th century (although some researchers point out that a similar preparation was known in Spain around the same time). By the early 1800s, recipes for mayo appeared in both English and German cookbooks which would have accounted for its introduction and popularity in Northern Germany.

          It seems to me that mayonnaise, and by extension, potato salad made with mayo, was especially popularized in the United States by the Hellman’s company. Of note is the fact that Richard Hellman and his family were from Vetschau in Northern Germany. In the early 1900s, they opened a deli on Columbus Avenue in NYC from which they sold salads made with his wife’s mayonnaise. Hellman went on to produce and sell mayo commercially. The ready availability of mayo, versus the need to make it from scratch, meant that it was increasingly used in home meal preparation and it increased the appeal of the potato salad served in the homes of immigrants from Northern Germany. This very detailed history of Hellman ‘s, written by the eminent food history scholar Andy Smith, supports this premise:


  9. Oh my, how I have missed her and her food! This is fabulous. I will definitely make the drive up the mesa for this!

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