Monday, July 25, 2011

Meat and Potatoes

I live in a place that produces potatoes.  Like, lots of them.  Like millions of pounds of them every year.  They're everywhere I look.

But I've never been a huge fan of potatoes (let's pull a veil over my substance abuse problem, re: fries and potato chips, shall we?).  I grew up eating (offensive) boiled potatoes that everyone in the family seemed to find perfectly adequate and I found perfectly disgusting.  As my good friend Miranda would say: "Revolting with a capital BARF."  And let's not go anywhere near the word "pierogi".  Retch.  Gag.

Having said all of that,  I've decided that getting old has its advantages.  Namely, you start to like stuff that used to make you want to hurl.  It's like magic.

Enter: Becky's Potato Salad.

This is a grown-up's potato salad.  It is refined, it is elegant and, most importantly, it is healthy.  It is out-of-this-World-delicious.

So who is Becky?  Becky is my veggie pusher.  She runs an organic CSA a few towns over (and just bought herself a rundown old farmhouse that she is slowly painting PERIWINKLE BLUE! - refer to Snatch for the appropriate accent to use when saying that out loud) and she provides us with our organic veggies every week.  We like Becky.  She gives us things like garlic scapes and tat soi and beet greens.  Then, because we have no blessed clue what to do with them, she gives us a recipe sheet with ideas.

That's where the potato salad comes from.  The sheet of culinary wonders.

Here's what you need:

1-1/2 lbs of new potatoes, cubed (but washed first, of course...silly)
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
2 tbsp minced garlic scapes or 2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper (or just give the pepper mill a good once-over, that's my modus operandi)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 "bunch" washed/dried/torn arugula (not sure what she originally meant by "bunch", but I just toss half the bag in)

Cook the potatoes until tender but still firm (15 mins or so).  Drain and cool.  Transfer to a big bowl.

Meanwhile, mix the vinegar, garlic (or scapes), salt and pepper in a bowl.  Drizzle in the oil, whisking until the mixture thickens (or my personal favourite: stick it all in a mason jar and SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE UNTIL YOU CAN'T SHAKE IT NO MO').

Toss the potatoes and the arugula with the vinaigrette (fancy French word alert).  Serve at room temperature.

That's it.  It sounds like a nothing salad, but holy crap on a cracker, it's good.  And just WAIT until you taste the leftovers the next day, after it's had time to marinate in the fridge (if you're like me, you'll want to add a touch more vinegar to it to re-jazzify it).  Gah. 

As a side note: I have humungous hands.  For a girl, I mean.  They're big.  I call them man-hands.  I am relaying this information to you because you need it in order to understand that following:

I have encountered mutant strawberries.

And no, they are not GMO.  These babies are organic and local.  Like, my-friend-Ruth's-garden-local.  Like, down-the-road-5-minutes-local.  And when I say organic, I mean organic.  Ruth doesn't even like wearing bug spray when she is harvesting edibles, in case it contaminates the food.  Guaranteed: they haven't been tampered with.  They're just the T. Rex of strawberries.  They're... beyond comprehension.  But, damn, they're delicious.

And I'm eating them all, MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

In other news, I have no knitting progress for you.  I have, however, been doing some sewing.  Nothing to show you yet, but I have an impending surprize that will explain all.  I gave my wheat-coloured socks to Ruth for her birthday.  They fit like a glove.  Sigh, I just love it when that happens.  Am falling in love with a lot of the new patterns I am finding online.  Like thisOr thisOr even this.  Can't forget this.  Oh.  And I bought New England Knits, on sale at Interweave Press (supposedly, it was a "hurt book" so it was marked down to $12, but it's in pristine condition so whatever).  Swoon.

Ok, that's it - I'm going to knit upstairs.  I'll be back soon, I promise.  I feel like I've been neglecting you guys and that just ain't right.  Kisses!


  1. So wait. You're saying that we BOTH live in potato-land? I had no idea. I mean, I'm disappointed in myself for not knowing that you come from a land of plentiful potatoes. Also I'm glad to hear that you like them now because, what the crap? Not liking potatoes? Psheesh!

    Umm...I'm making that salad tomorrow.

    Periwinkle blue. Ha! I love Snatch.

  2. I'm not a fan of arugula, but the rest of that salad sounds yummy! I made strawberry shortcake on the weekend. Verdict: shortcakes = FAIL, strawberries and fresh whipped cream = SCRUMPTIOUS!!!

    As for the potatoes, you should make Michael Smith's Oven-Crisped Potatoes, if you haven't already (have we had this discussion before?). This are my favourite way to make potatoes, and its 's easy! Make them. Make them now.

    "Holy crap on a cracker"?? 1) Ha! 2) Grody!