We humans have more in common with honey bees than we give them credit — both our species are attracted to colourful food.
The inspiration for this has been a few weeks coming. It all started when I received “red” potatoes in my CSA… or at least, I thought they were red. But when I sliced into them, I saw the “red” (or pink) colour carried all the way through (I would later learn they were “all-red” potatoes. I thought, “Damn, that’s a waste” as I chopped them up for a simple fry-up of potatoes for breakfast. I knew I had to do something more with these, so I stopped cutting and saved the rest, hoping more would arrive — and then, when I picked up my next CSA share last week, they had a basket full of purple potatoes in the “for sale” side.
So I quickly dashed to the car, picked up the wallet and said “I’ll take these too.” I should have asked the price before because this little basket of 5 russets cost me $5 — and I could almost sense a tone of “Sorry” in Lauren’s voice as she took the money from me. Nevertheless, I knew with the purchase my kitchen destiny was determined … and you can see the result.
Okay, so a potato salad might seem like a pretty oh-hum recipe to post, but really, when was the last time you saw a potato salad that looked like bouquet of flowers? But take a taste and there are a few surprises in there, trust me … including feta. The feta adds some textural interest, some amazing saltiness that balances the earthiness of the potato, but also brings balance to the other mystery ingredient: Greek yogurt. Yes, yogurt — and low-fat Greek yogurt at that — produces a tangy and still relatively healthy creaminess for the potato salad, hiding the mayo and giving lots of creaminess without 18% cream. Finally, for a third twist in the classic, I topped it with some freshly cooked bacon crumbled on top. Necessary? No, hardly — but as I turned the baked potato inside out, my god that was good. But if you want to keep this vegetarian, simply omit it.
Tips: Make sure your potatoes are thin-skinned. Even if you’re not going for the colours in this potato salad, there is difference between these and baking potatoes which are thick-skinned. As well, I boiled the purple potatoes separately to ensure their rich colour didn’t infiltrate the others.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20
Total time: 45 minutes
Tri-Coloured Potato Salad with Feta-Mayo & Bacon-Crumble
- 3½ lbs (1.6 kg) medium potatoes, thin-skinned (3-4 of each colour)
- 1/4 cup (65mL) feta, crumbled
- 1/3 cup (85mL) fresh dill, chiffonade
- 1/2 cup (125mL) celery, chopped
- 1/4 cup (65mL) onion, diced
- 2 Tablespoons (30 mL) chopped fresh chives
- 1 small clove of garlic, smashed and finely diced
- 1 cup (250mL) mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup (65mL) Greek yogurt
- 1 Tablespoon (15mL) Dijon mustard
- 1 Tablespoon (15mL) Grainy (old-style) mustard
- 1 Tablespoon (15mL) cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5mL) salt
- 1 teaspoon (5mL) sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon (1mL) ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon (1mL) paprika
- 3-4 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
- 4 slices thick-sliced bacon, cooked and roughly chopped (optional)
- Hard-boil the eggs. Place them in a medium pot and cover with water above the eggs 1-inch. Bring to rolling boil then simmer for a minute. Turn burner off and let stand in water for 15 minutes. Remove from water and add to ice bath for 5-10 minutes then set aside.
Optionally fry up the 4 slices of bacon now as well and, when cooked, remove from pan, let drain and cool on paper towel.
- Carefully scrub the potatoes of all their dirt but leave the skins intact. Cut the potatoes into halves or thirds so that they are all the same size.
Place them in a pot, covered with water, and bring to boil. Boil for about 15 minutes, until just fork tender.
Note: I boiled the purple potatoes separately to ensure their colour didn’t effect the other potatoes.
Remove potatoes from water, immerse them in cold water to stop them from cooking further. Change the water until the temperature of the water stays cold. Drain the potatoes and let dry.
Once potatoes have cooled and dried, begin to cube them into “mouth-sized” chunks for the salad, removing any blemishes, eyes, or broken bits and plaice them all in a large bowl.
- Wash and dry the dill weed, remove the fronds from the stems, and chiffonade them.
Finely chop the garlic, chop the celery, onion, chives, and crumble the feta and add all of this to the potatoes.
Make the dressing now by combining in a 2 cup measuring cup the mayo, Greek yogurt, both mustards, vinegar, salt and pepper, sugar, and paprika. Mix well and pour over the potato salad and mix it all in well being careful not to break the potatoes in the process.
Peel the eggs and roughly chop them. I use a pastry blender to do this and it works very well to keep them rustically chopped.
Carefully fold the chopped eggs into the potato salad being careful not to over-mix → You DO NOT want to break the eggs and potatoes into small bits.
Taste for salt and either serve immediately and “warm” or put it in fridge and serve later.
Optionally serve with crumbled bacon — or keep it vegetarian and enjoy.