It may sound a bit obvious, but for Pete Evans the key to agreat potato salad is using the right potatoes. “I love to use asmall waxy variety for salad,” says Evans, an Australian chef,restaurateur and cookbook author. “Baby new potatoes in red orwhite, or fingerlings will work great, too. You do need to choosethe right potato for the job.”
Of course, what you do with the potatoes matters, too. He saysthe only way to cook the potatoes is whole. And be careful how youdress them.
“I like the earthy flavor of the potato skin to come through mysalad,” he said in an email interview. “For me that’s what can makean ordinary salad taste extra ordinary — skin on! Then don’t makethe mistake of drowning the potatoes in a heavy mayonnaise.Vinaigrettes or just herbs and olive oil (particularly dill), saltand pepper are all you need for a quick and easy dressing.”
For AP’s 20 Salads of Summer series, Evans selected a recipe forpotato salad with smoked trout and watercress from his latest book,”My Grill: Outdoor Cooking Australian Style.”
“The potato salad I have chosen uses smoked trout, which is aperfect match with the creamy potatoes and crunchy green apple.Texture is as important as flavor when developing recipes and thisone nails both of those elements. It will work with smoked salmonor any kind of smoked fish if trout is not available.”
Potato Saladwith Smoked Trout and Watercress
Start to finish: 30 minutesServings: 6
Place the potatoes in a large pot. Add enough cool water tocover by 1 inch, then salt the water. Bring to a boil and cookuntil tender, about 15 minutes. Drain the potatoes, then rinseunder cool water. Arrange the potatoes on a kitchen towel to cooland dry completely.
Meanwhile, fill a medium bowl with ice water. Add the watercressand set aside to crisp.
Remove any skin and bones from the trout, then flake the fleshinto chunks. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the creme fraiche and mustard.Season with salt and pepper.
When the potatoes have cooled and dried, slice them into1/2-inch pieces. Add the potatoes to the creme fraiche mixture,gently stirring to coat.
Drain and dry the watercress, then in a large bowl combine it,the flaked trout, chives, apple slices, lemon juice and 2tablespoons of the olive oil. Toss well.
To serve, arrange a quarter of the potatoes on each servingplate, then top with the watercress-trout mixture. Drizzle eachserving with a bit of the final tablespoon of olive oil.
Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to thenearest whole number): 363 calories; 122 calories from fat (34percent of total calories); 14 g fat (3 g saturated; 0 g transfats); 32 mg cholesterol; 32 g carbohydrate; 26 g protein; 3 gfiber; 400 mg sodium.
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