A couple of weeks ago, I came home from a weekend trip in Ottawa to find a goodie basket had been dropped off by the wonderful folks at EarthFresh Foods, filled with everything I’d need to participate in the 2012 Klondike Rose Foodies Contest.
The challenge? To create an original recipe highlighting their Klondike Rose potatoes, a delicious yellow-fleshed potato with bright pink skin and a buttery, slightly sweet flavour.
I decided I wanted to make a recipe that would show off the delicious flavour and texture of the potatoes: a potato salad. Not just any ordinary potato salad, though, but a summery version that embodies everything that’s wonderful about this time of year.
Many potato salads are a mushy mess of overcooked potatoes loaded down with heaps of mayonnaise and with little else to liven things up besides chopped celery or hardboiled eggs. In other words, beige, boring and bland bland bland. Definitely not contest-winning material.
My potato salad, on the other hand, is anything but bland. It’s tossed with a zippy mustard-and-herb vinaigrette that lets the naturally sweet flavour of the Klondike Rose potatoes shine through, instead of masking it with a heavy creamy dressing, while purple spring onions and red peppers keep things lively with pops of bright colour and flavour.
Inspired by the fact that BBQ season is in full swing, I decided I’d switch up my usual potato salad recipe by grilling all of my vegetables. As it turns out, the Klondike Rose potatoes are perfectly suited for grilling – it brings out their natural sweetness, and adds a subtle smoky flavour. Same goes for the spring onions and red peppers, which take on sweet and smoky flavours all their own from being lightly charred on the grill.
Standard-issue church lady potato salad, this ain’t. And while it might not fit in at a church basement potluck, but it’s just perfect for a sunny summer evening in the backyard, particularly when paired with a juicy grilled steak (or grilled Mennonite smoked pork chops from the farmers market, like we did).
Trust me. Next time you’re in the mood for potato salad, put away the mayonnaise jar and fire up the grill instead.You’ll be ever so glad you did.
Disclosure: In exchange for my participation in the Foodies for Klondike Rose Challenge, I was provided with a basket of ingredients and a grocery gift card by EarthFresh.
For more information about Klondike Rose potatoes, please visit EarthFresh on Facebook.
- ¼ cup apple cider or white wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2.5 lbs Klondike Rose potatoes
- 1 large red pepper, cut into quarters
- 1 bunch spring onions or green onions
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients until emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Rinse and scrub the potatoes. Cut up into quarters (or eighths, if the potatoes are on the larger side).
- Dump into the pot of boiling water and cook until just barely tender, about 5-6 minutes. Drain the potatoes and set aside.
- Meanwhile, fire up your grill and preheat on high for 5 minutes or so, then drop the heat to medium-high.
- Toss the green onions and peppers with 1 tbsp olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Arrange on the preheated grill and cook for 5-10 minutes, or until onions are lightly charred and peppers are tender-crisp, turning over every so often. Transfer to a platter.
- Toss potatoes with remaining tbsp olive oil, and arrange on the grill. Cook for 10-15 minutes, or until quite soft and golden-brown all over, turning the potatoes occasionally and moving them around as needed to ensure all sides are evenly browned. Transfer to a large serving bowl.
- Pour the prepared vinaigrette over the hot potatoes, and toss to coat evenly.
- Trim the tops and bottoms off the onions, and brush off any charred or peeling skin from the peppers. Roughly chop, add to the salad and toss until evenly combined.
- Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the potato salad for at least 1 hour before serving, or up to 2 days.