Wednesday, April 23, 2014

fancy potato salad

To be completely honest with you, traditional "white" potato salads have never been my favorite thing. And by white, I'm not just referring to the color of the potato but also to that way too thick layer of mayonnaise that coats everything fresh in the salad. Don't get me wrong -- mayonnaise has a very useful and delicious place in life (what would a BLT be, for instance, without mayo?), but for me it's definitively not on a potato salad. Instead, I like the potato salads that are dressed a little more lightly, with a vinaigrette, so that all of the fresh ingredients, and especially the potatoes, can be tasted. This one, from Smitten Kitchen, was right up my alley.

This salad is a great side dish to bring to a cookout (although be prepared for some eye rolls at the tufted egg), but I also like to make it as a dinner salad for nights when I'm alone. It's vegetarian and light, and seems like the perfect dinner for spring evenings when the air is warm and you feel more like assembling than cooking.

[night alone, depicted]
-1/4 cup white wine vinegar
-1/4 cup water
-1 tbsp. salt
-1 1/2 tsp. sugar
-2 stalks of celery, thinly sliced
-2 tbsp. olive oil
-2 tsp. whole-grain mustard
-1 tsp. Dijon mustard
-2 tsp. white wine vinegar
-1 small shallot
-1 lb. fingerling potatoes, boiled & cooled
-2 large eggs, hard boiled & quartered
-fresh herbs to taste

-Combine the vinegar, water, salt & sugar in a bowl and then add the celery [first segment of ingredients above]. Allow to sit in the refrigerator for up to sixty minutes.
-Stir together the olive oil, mustards, vinegar and shallot to make a smooth dressing [second segment of ingredients above]. Season with salt & pepper. 
-Arrange the fingerling potatoes, sliced long ways, on a plate & pour the dressing over them. Next, use a mesh sieve to turn the eggs into confetti: press them through the sieve over the potatoes so that they are in little bits [see photo]. Try to evenly distribute over the salad.
-Drain the celery, and sprinkle on top. Finish with your selection of fresh herbs, crumbled bacon or your choice of additive. 

[grape hyacinth to set the mood]

[dig in]

Recipe Source: Smitten Kitchen

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