Monday, May 24, 2010

The Springiest Potato Salad Ever

As I've mentioned many times before, I just don't love mayonnaise based salads. I've been a vinaigrette gal since way back. I began thinking about this potato salad the other day when Food52 announced that this week's contest is "your best potato salad." This one immediately came to mind and as I checked back into my blog archives, I found that I never actually posted this recipe. I almost posted this recipe last year at exactly this time (May 28, 2009 - at least I'm consistent), but didn't post it then because it seemed to me I'd been overdoing it with vinaigrette recipes.

I happened upon some really fresh, tiny, new red potatoes at the farm stand last weekend and although this dish is tasty with any small potato (I've used red, different fingerling varieties and baby Yukon golds all with great success) these new potatoes were something special. In fact, all the vegetable components of this dish are completely fresh at farm stands in the DC area right now. Make it this weekend for your Memorial Day barbecues! Later on in the summer, you can easily sub in minced regular garlic and scallions, or even minced shallots for the spring onions.

So one year later, here it is. Karen R. please let me know if this differs from what I sent you last year!

Wendy's Springiest Potato Salad Ever

(serves 4 - 6 as a side dish)

2 lbs. washed new red potatoes, halved or quartered if larger. I like to try to buy the ones as close to one inch around as possible. Try to keep all the pieces close to the same size so they cook in the same amount of time.

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon whole grain mustard

1 tablespoon red wine or champagne vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

a couple of pinches of salt, more to taste

a few grinds of pepper, more to taste

scant 1/4 cup thinly sliced green or spring garlic, the kind that looks like scallions (or two cloves minced regular garlic)

1/4 cup thinly sliced green or spring onions, plus another tablespoon for garnish (or scallions - or even 2 small minced shallots)

1 cup pea shoots, roughly chopped (should be a few large handfuls when whole)

1. Put cut potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water by about 1/2 to 1 inch. Lightly salt the water. Bring to a boil and then lower to a low boil/high simmer for 8 - 10 minutes. Check potato piece after about 8 minutes by piercing with a fork. You want the fork to slide in easily, but you don't want to let the potatoes get mushy.

2. While the potatoes cook, in a large bowl, whisk the mustards and vinegar together. Add the olive oil in a stream, whisking as you add. Add salt and pepper. Add the green onions and green garlic to the vinaigrette and toss.

3. When potatoes are fully cooked, drain in a colander and immediately add into the bowl with the vinaigrette. Mix gently.

4. Add in the chopped pea shoots and toss gently but well. Taste for salt and pepper.

5. Garnish with reserved green onions or scallions.

6. Serve warm or at room temperature. If you make this earlier in the day, refrigerate in the interim, but take out about 1/2 hour before you want to serve so that the salad can come back to room temperature.

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