Remember that whole song and dance about trying to watch my carbs? Well I had one trip to the beach and that went right out the window! How can you have a Memorial Day holiday and not eat...well...carbs? Buns for burgers and sandwiches. Cookies and baked goodies. Potato salad.
I have to say that I have a certain amount of snottiness and nostalgia about potato salad. No one could make it as well as my mom could. Her recipe? Some globbed up concoction of eggs, mustard, mayo and plain 'ol russet potatoes. Was it very good? Looking back, I'm not so sure...but that's how she did it so that's the way it should be!
This past holiday weekend, I made two different kinds of potato salads. The first was the Mesa Grill potato salad, courtesy of Mr. Personality - Bobby Flay. It was so spicy and complex and delicious. However, when all of the ingredients were combined, it looked like a CSI crime scene photo. It's definetely one from the "Looks Like Crap, Tastes Like Delicious" files!
The second batch was a Jamie Oliver recipe that I have been wanting to try for some time. I saw him make it on his show a long time ago - throwing handfuls of herbs and seasonings together all helly-nelly like. It was so loose and full of really fresh flavors. It seemed like it would be such a light and original version of what i consider to be a very heavy dish. I was right - the creme fraiche and the lemon just barely coat the potatoes. I just seasoned it with herbs and lemon zest to taste and added some dried red chili flakes for occasional heat. Some words of wisdom: be prepared to re-season after it sits - it seemed to soak up the salt and pepper as the flavors melded together.
Jamie Oliver's Purple Potato Salad - serves 6 - recipe originally found here on JamieOliver.com
• 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• juice of 1–2 lemons, to taste
• 250g crème fraîche or fromage frais
• 500g baby new potatoes
• 500g purple potatoes
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• a bunch of radishes, finely sliced
• a handful of fresh mint leaves, chopped
• a handful of fresh chives, chopped
Make the dressing by mixing together the olive oil, lemon juice and crème fraîche or fromage frais. Cook the potatoes in plenty of boiling salted water for around 20 minutes until tender, and drain well. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, rub off the skins with a knife and slice into bite-size pieces. Mix with the dressing, then add the radishes and herbs and season well to taste.