|Tiffany Richter with her
potato salad. (Photo: J.D. Pooley/Sentinel-Tribune)
Jazz up a Memorial Day picnic with this Bowling Green mom’s potato salad, which is peppered with a little
The secret to making this traditional side dish a little different is something a little unexpected, said
"It’s the green olives and the 50-50 of Miracle Whip and mayonnaise," said Richter, who whips
up the salad a few times a year, whenever it’s requested or if she has to bring a dish to a gathering.
Most recently, she put together a batch for Friday’s Bowling Green Middle School teacher appreciation
lunch, sponsored by the Parent-Teacher Organization.
Don’t let the olives be off-putting. Richter said she always receives compliments on the potato salad.
"Wow, what is this?" she said is the typical reaction. "It just tastes different. People
are surprised by it."
The recipe is from her mom, Claudia Swift, who lives in Henderson, Nevada. Richter grew up in the
Lakewood, Ohio, area, and came to Bowling Green in 1993 for college. She met her husband, Michael, who
is from Toledo and the two settled here in 1998. They have two children, Madison and Will, who attend
the middle school. Michael Richter is an accountant for Radel, Smith and Associates on Washington
Will occasionally joins his mom in the kitchen. Richter said they try to set aside Wednesdays to make one
of his favorite recipes, either a dinner or dessert.
Her son has been on the receiving end of Richter’s true passion in the kitchen: baking. For his birthday,
she’s baked cakes that looked like a lightsaber or had an Indiana Jones theme.
"I do a lot of baking. I make wedding cakes and cupcakes and that kind of stuff."
Her cousin recently received quite a cake surprise from Richter for his March wedding.
"I just did a fun cake for my cousin’s wedding. It was groom’s cake. He really likes NASCAR and the
(Florida) Gators and the Toronto Blue Jays. I made each tier one of those things.
"And I drove it from Ohio to Florida."
She carefully boxed each layer and the whole cake survived the drive south.
"It was nerve-racking but it was fun."
Richter said she will often use a boxed cake mix, but never a store-bought icing.
"It’s mostly the frosting that I’m known for, that people like."
There’s a secret ingredient to her icings, just like there is in the potato salad. It’s clear, Mexican
vanilla – all the way from Mexico.
She said she keeps quite a bit on hand, and will always request an order when friends or family are
traveling. Richter suspects it can be ordered quite easily online, but hasn’t tried yet.
"I try to get a really good vanilla. Then I know it will taste good."
Richter will share some of her decorating skills at Hobby Lobby, where she will be teaching classes on
the Wilton Method of Cake Decorating starting in June.
Richter is on the board of director’s for Hannah’s Socks, a charity based in Perrysburg, and on the
hospitality committee for the Bowling Green swim team.
5 pounds red skin potatoes
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup Miracle Whip
1 small jar of dill pickle relish
1 small jar of green olives sliced (reserve juice for later)
Chopped onion (optional, to taste)
Chopped celery (optional, to taste)
Boil the potatoes until slightly tender. Cut into small cubes.
Mix together the mayonnaise, Miracle Whip, relish and green olives. Add salt, pepper and paprika to
taste. Add chopped onion and chopped celery to taste.
Mix this with the potatoes. Add the juice from the olives if it’s too dry.
Chill until ready to serve.
This is best the next day.