When we decided to cook some hot dogs (actually an assortment of sausages) with fixin’s for 4th of July, it seemed that the traditional side dishes were the way to go. The problem is that I don’t care for potato salad and I abhor baked beans. What to do? I’ve created a potato salad that extends its bounds way beyond potatoes. And for the baked beans, some cannelloni beans with sauteed veggies was a great substitute. The beans will have to wait for another post. Back to the potato salad. . . .
I can’t give exact ratios for everything since I just made it up as I went along and later decided to post a recipe (oops).
Take several smallish Yukon gold and red bliss potatoes and cut them into small cubes. Put in salted water and bring to a light boil for a few minutes. Poke them with a fork occasionally and remove them when still firm, but when the fork can pierce the skin without much effort. Drain the potatoes and rinse them in cold water to keep them from continuing to cook.
Put a bunch of asparagus in water and bring to a low boil to cook them until just able to be pierced with a fork – do not overcook them! Remove from heat and put in ice bath.
Take a head of broccoli, trim into small florets and cut the stem into small diced pieces. Put the stem pieces into water and bring to a boil. Add the florets. As it begins to return to a boil, remove from heat and put into ice bath.
Hard boil 3 eggs. Diced the whites; reserve 1 1/2 of the yolks.
In a bowl, combine, potatoes, asparagus (cut into small pieces,) broccoli, egg whites, a can of medium sized black olives (the olives should be drained and cut in half), a couple of slices of procuitto (cut into small pieces), a couple of stalks of celery (cut on the diagonal into small pieces.) Add smoked paprika, garlic powder, Greek oregano, dried tarragon, salt, and black pepper. Stir well.
In a separate bowl, whisk together some mayonnaise, the reserved egg yolks, and a the juice from one large lemon. The consistency should be able to pour slowly off a spoon – the amount of mayo will be determined by how much it take to reach that consistency.
Fold mayo mixture into potato mixture. Adjust seasoning to taste. Refrigerate. Serve with capers on the side.
[If I think that there will be leftover potato salad I do not put onions into it, since they can get strong. Otherwise, if I think it’ll all get eaten quickly, then I add diced green onions. You can always add the onios at the last minute.]