Friday, June 20, 2008


Roasted Potato Salad

As a friend to us all The Hostess will have you know that she is not a fan of cucumbers appearing in her green salad.

She is - in fact - against it.

Straight up cucumber salad is fine she says.

But should those tiny gourds come mixed in with her leafy greens? Not at all fine by her.

Some sort of child hood trauma I suspect (and I suspect as much because I believe she said as much...only I forgot the details). But any which way, it deserves to be noted when a menu is being crafted upon which she will dine.

Let's face facts. We all have some sort of thing in our worlds too. That sort of thing that isn't really a big deal, but simply creates a little border in our dining experiences. (As a side note, she also has a serious aversion to/obsession with, that seminal 70's band Cheap Trick, but she won't tell me why. And since she told me she reads this site...well...perhaps she will share in the comments section? Yes? Let's hope!)

When challenged with making a side dish for a picnic luncheon starring her and The Ombudsman (We can't leave him out now can we!) my initial plan was, I admit, a lovely Greek salad with diced cucumbers. (!) But in an effort to be half the hostess she is (and the bar is quite high), that was off the menu. Thinking fast, I made this version of potato salad instead.

(I know. I should have written all of this about the cucumber salad, but that's already been posted!)

And my dears, it was just great.

Happy summer times indeed.

Now try this my peaches and taste the joy.

1 pound assorted creamer potatoes, halved
2 yellow bell peppers, cut into strips
1 red bell pepper, same
3 cloves garlic, rough chop
1 red onion, large dice
1/4 cup olive oil
4 stalks celery, small dice
For the dressing
4 tablepsoons olive oil
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup minced dill
2 T. minced chives
1 teaspoon lavender blossoms, crumbled

Preheat your oven to 425F.

Boil the potatoes in heavily salted water until just slightly undercooked.

Drain and toss with the bell pepper, garlic, red onion and olive oil. Spread in an even layer on a baking sheet. Roast until golden brown.

Whisk together the rest of the ingredients. Taste and adjust as needed.

When the potatoes are done, toss with the dressing. Let cool slightly and serve.

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Cucumbers are about 95% water.

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What is it with North Americans and their love affair with potato salad. Emeril Lagasse showed three on GMA this morning and they are running a competition for the best potato salad. Very rarely have I tasted a potato salad I enjoy, most of them leave me cold. The salads we made in the UK were always very simple and not overloaded with lots of ingredients. Not sure where the eggs, which most people use, came from.

Who exactly are the Hostess and the Ombudsman?
Looks like a great summer dish!
I love potato salad. I will have to try this recipe
Ah, cucumber aversion. I know that feeling well.

What a lovely salad.

I'll bet the lavender adds a gorgeous fragrance. Wishin' it were a tad more summery down here, I can tell you...
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Rachael - the addition of lavender sounds fantastic to potato salad! A nice summery dish for sure.
But don't you need more than just one pound of potatoes?
Depends on how many you are serving. With one pound of potatoes plus the rest of the veg, this dish should feed four, easily.
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