Potato salad: the age old stand by for casual parties, barbecues, family dinners. A bad one is bland and dull and very uninspiring. A good one though can be a fabulous addition to a menu.
I love this one because it has a bit of spice, some un-potato-salad-like flavours, and the homemade aoli is gorgeous. It is worth the effort to make your own – and it really is easy.
- 1.5 kg baby potatoes
- 125 g pepperoni
- 2/3 c well drained sun dried tomatoes
- 4 T pine nuts, toasted
Boil the potatoes until just cooked and cut into large chunks. Cut pepperoni into thin slivers and dice the tomatoes. Gently mix all ingredients together.
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 cloves garlic, finely crushed
- 2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 3/4 c grapeseed oil
- 1/2 c finely chopped fresh basil.
Beat egg yolks, garlic and juice in a medium sized bowl until smooth. Gradually beat in the oil, initially a few drops at a time. Once you’ve added about 1/3 of the oil, you can add the remainder in a fine stream as you beat the mixture. Stir in the basil.
Adapted from Salads / Australian Women’s Weekly. Sydney: AWW Home Library, 1992.
On soccer nights I must have a filing and nutricious meal for the budding soccer star, but one that isn’t too heavy. I feed him before he goes and then give him more when he gets home. So he needs to be able to play sport after eating, and he eats right before bed because he comes home so late. For this reason I often try to make a meat free option. I was inspired to make a potato-based soup by a recipe I found on petit4chocolatier, where I often find ispiration.
- 3 T butter
- 1 red onion, diced
- 200 g button mushrooms, chopped
- 3 stalks celery, chopped
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 750 g potatoes
- 1 large head broccoli, chopped
- handful of fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 t dried mixed herbs
- 2 T soy sauce
- 1.5 L vegetable (or chicken) stock
- 3/4 c milk
- 3/4 c sour cream
- handful grated tasty cheese
In a large saucepan, saute onion, mushrooms and celery. Once cooked, add remaining vegetables, herbs, soy sauce and stock. Add water if soup is too thick. Once all vegetables are cooked through, turn heat off and cool enough to blend. Blend in batches with a bit of the milk and sour cream in each batch. Return to pan, add cheese and heat gently. Serve with hot bread.
The traditional Bohemian diet was full of hearty meaty casseroles and bakes, accompanied by assortments of potatoes, pasta, rice and dumplings. It was delicious fare for meat eaters, but I doubt that any of those recipes would have received the Heart Foundation’s Tick of Approval.
I rarely make those sorts of meals now, and when I do I squeeze in extra vegetables and serve with salad. But this has been a cold wet and windy winter, and sometimes an old fashioned hearty baked meal like this is just the thing.
- 2 T olive oil
- 800 g chuck steak
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 lg carrot, diced
- 1 lg red capsicum, diced
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 1 T sweet paprika
- 1/4 t carawayseeds
- 400 g can diced tomatoes
- 3/4 c chicken stock
- 1 lg potato
- 2 T butter
- 2 T milk
- 1/4 c self-raising flour
- 2 T parmesan
- 2 T finely chopped flat parsley
Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Brown the steak in batches and place in slow cooker. Set cooker to low while preparing remaining ingredients. Saute onion, carraway seeds, paprika and garlic in saucepan for 2 minutes, and add to slow cooker. Add carrot, capsicum, celery, tomatoes and stock to cooker. Put the lid on the cooker and leave to cook for about 2 hours or until beef is tender.
Remove lid from cooker but leave the heat on. Preheat oven to 180C.
Peel and chop potato. Boil until soft and drain. Mash with butter and milk. Season to taste, and stir in flour, parmesan and parsley.
Divide beef mixture into 4 or 5 individual baking dishes. Top with spoonfuls of potato dumplings. Spray with oil and bake for 20 minutes or until dumplings are golden.
Adapted from Australian Good Taste July 2012.