Whenever anyone tells me they are bringing potato salad to a potluck, I cringe. Usually that means a quart or gallon of potato salad from Smart and Final or Costco. The only discernible flavor? Mayonnaise! In my opinion, the big box stores have just ruined the reputation of potato salad.
Make your own and raise the bar. This recipe is a game changer. No ho hum flavors. No poor excuse of a potluck contribution. Folks will be asking you for the recipe instead of asking you to take the left-overs home with you.
Gourmet tomato spread is the hallmark ingredient in the recipe below. Make your own using directions below or use the recipe in the Just Tomatoes cookbook, an enduring inspiration in this kitchen.
The other significant flavor note in this recipe comes from capers. If capers are new to you or your family, go easy. Start with less than the recommended amount. Folks have an immediate reaction to capers. They adore them or they detest them. You will soon know where your family and friends fall on this issue.
If you do not have your own dried garden tomatoes to use for the spread (what a shame!), then you have a second option. Purchase a jar of sun-dried tomatoes preserved in oil. Crush 3 cloves of garlic and sauté them in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add 1/4 cup of water to the sauté pan along with the contents of the jarred tomatoes. Simmer for about 2 minutes to soften the tomatoes. Run the mixture through the blender or food processor. You can process the spread into a totally smooth consistency or leave it a little chunky. I like the chunky. Store the leftover spread in the refrigerator in a tightly covered jar. Cover the mixture with about a half inch of olive oil and the spread will last for months.
If you happen to have dressing left, use it on sandwiches, as a dip, as a sauce for roasted or steamed vegetables, as a topping on baked potatoes, or……… Yes, have fun!
However you serve this salad, be lavish with the garnish to complement the lavish flavors. In the accompanying picture you can see we used garden tomato, fresh herbs, and black olives. What a feast!
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