i know i’ve mentioned before how i can’t follow a recipe to save my life. not sure whether it’s short attention span, annoyance with details or what, but man, do i just hate to be tied to following instructions when i cook. that said, i found it kind of amusing today when i pulled out my “recipe” for potato salad. jotted on a scrap of paper from a work notepad some 15 years ago it’s now yellowed with time and a wash of vegetable oil that overturned during the process one summer. less recipe and more loose list of ingredients, it’s all the reminder i need to successfully whip up this summer side that’s the only potato salad i knew at my house growing up. i know i could never just give this to anyone and have it come out okay. there are extras like salt and pepper, knowing by look, feel or taste when i need to add a little more this or that . . . knowing that the ingredients with question marks are items that may or may not be added and that my mom couldn’t quite remember, herself, when she rattled off the recipe whether they should be included or not. but every time, it comes together effortlessly, with kudos no matter where i take it. as i mentally prepare for tomorrow’s Father’s Day dinner, complete with 3 new actual recipes i’m going to try, i just hope that if they’re good, they’ll one day become as natural to me as this one is.