New Potato Salad

I really had to resist my characteristic food fussing with this lovely potato salad. I kept thinking of things to add and had olives, green beans, and hard boiled eggs out and ready to go. But I’m proud to say that I tasted before adding the accouterments and had the self-regulation to stop at it’s perfect point. I think this dish stands tall in it’s simplicity. It’s bright and light, but still has complexity and the substance you expect from potato salad.

New potatoes are just young potatoes of any variety that haven’t converted all their sugar to starch. I prefer the small red and purple varieties over russets and “baking” potatoes.

Scale the recipe up or down depending on how many potatoes you have, not how many you have to feed, because this is the sort of thing that gets better the next couple of days and you’ll want it again and again. Also, this is ideal to make ahead for a picnic or potluck. What could be better summer fare?

New Potato Salad
Adapted from Gourmet, August 2006

4 lb small potatoes, preferably new potatoes, halved or chopped in 1″ pieces
3 tsp salt, divided
1/2 small, sweet onion, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
3 Tbs whole-grain mustard
2 Tbs white-wine vinegar
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
6 Tbs olive oil
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley or cilantro, chopped


Cover potatoes with water by 1 inch in a large pot, then bring to a boil with 2 teaspoons salt. Simmer, partially covered, until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes, then drain. Put the potatoes back in the empty pot. In a small bowl, whisk together the onion, mustard, vinegar, pepper, and remaining teaspoon salt, then add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified. Add to the pot of potatoes with the parsley or cilantro and toss well to combine. Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve warm or even better, cover and refrigerate for at least a few hours. Bring to room temperature to serve.


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