March 17, 2011

Herbed Potato Salad: Putting an End to Creepy Picnic Food

I don't know about you, but I have a deep and abiding hatred for the mayonnaise-y, hard boiled egg-y, raw onion-y potato salad that Americans insist on bringing to every picnic, cookout, and barbecue they attend.

Why? Well, it's a shade of yellow that doesn't grow in nature. And it's slimy. And when I eat it, I can feel my arteries locking themselves in the bathroom to listen to Nine Inch Nails and "cut themselves shaving."

Because I lose all self control around them, I tend not to keep potatoes in the house. But when I came across my first recipe for Herbed Potato Salad, I decided to make an exception because it sounded so lovely. It was both the best and the worst decision I've ever made.

Here's my version, which, although not all that different from the original, is so good that I always have to hide it from T until it's time for dinner.

Herbed Potato Salad

  • 2-3 lbs. baby Red Bliss potatoes, washed
  • 3 Tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons roughly chopped dill
  • 2 Tablespoons roughly chopped mint
  • 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • The juice of one lemon (more or less to taste)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Black pepper to taste
1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Season it with a bit of olive oil and salt. Cut the potatoes into bite-size pieces (halves or quarters, depending on size). Cook the potatoes for about ten minutes, or until fork-tender. Drain and set aside.

2. Gently, stir in the chopped herbs, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Taste, and adjust seasoning.

3. Serve warm or cold, or bring to your next picnic in order to spread the word of the [potato] Lord.

The key with this salad is to use fresh herbs. You can add/substitute cilantro, basil, tarragon, or any other spice that excites you (and, really, which spices don't excite you?), just as long as you promise to use only fresh herbs.

The first recipe I found for Herbed Potato Salad was in a little self-published cookbook produced by Tangiers International, an amazing Middle Eastern market in West Hartford, CT. I thought I had discovered something that no one else knew about, until I did a quick Google search and found that there are a whole lot of similar recipes out there. So, no, this isn't a grand revelation. But I feel that it's important to do my part to bring an end to the tyranny of yellow, gloopy potato salad as soon as possible.


  1. Yeah, yeah, go on.... just rub our noses in the fact that down there in your little "corner of redneck, rural hell" you can already eat out on the deck!

  2. Hard boiled egg in potato salad is so gross! This looks great though. Did you ever try out the potato salad I (not realizing you weren't eating potatoes) linked to you during your elimination diet?

  3. Your feelings for potato salad are my exact feelings about a thing American's call "coleslaw." Which I view as basically disgusting and drowning in mayonnaise.

    We eat a very different and amazing version of coleslaw in my family.

    My Grandma's recipe for coleslaw is to "typical picnic coleslaw" what your recipe is to gloppy, yellow potato salad.