I love a good potato salad.
Oooh la la. Provencal Potato Salad. This one is a little different.
Perfect for summer gatherings because it doesn’t use mayo. No need to worry about keeping it cold since the best flavor comes out when served at room temperature.
Crisp snappy green beans and perky cherry tomatoes really liven this one up.
The dressing has whole grain mustard to give it a little extra zip and flavor.
If all that doesn’t convince you to give it a try, why not simply make it because it’s pretty?
Here’s what you need:
Small boiling potatoes, green beans, green onions, cherry tomatoes, lemon, dijon mustard, whole grain mustard, light olive oil, salt & pepper.
I’m totally addicted to these nifty little potatoes.
My store sells them in little variety bags. You mostly get tiny Yukon Gold Potatoes but with a few red skinned and these groovy purple potatoes thrown in.
They’re small and made to be eaten skin on so no extra peeling required.
You’ll need about 1 1/2 pounds of whatever little boiling potatoes you can find. I usually make this salad with the red skinned ones but since these were on sale and so cute, they came home instead.
Rinse your potatoes and cut them into halves or quarters depending on the size.
I’ve cut mine into quarters, put them in a pan of cool water, and put them on the stove to boil.
Cook the potatoes at a rapid boil for 10-12 minutes until they are tender when poked with a sharp knife or fork but not falling apart.
While the potatoes cook, rinse, cut the ends off, and cut 1/2 pound of fresh green beans into 1 inch pieces
Cut 1/2 pint of cherry or pear tomatoes in half
and slice up 2 green onions. Use both the white and green parts of the onions.
When the potatoes are tender, remove them from the boiling water with a slotted spoon. Set the cooked potatoes aside in a large mixing bowl but keep the pot of boiling water.
Add 1 teaspoon or so of salt to the potato water and drop in the sliced green beans.
Cook or blanch the green beans VERY quickly – only for about 3 minutes.
The green beans should still be very crisp. To stop the cooking and seal in their bright green color, immediately spoon the beans into a bowl of ice water.
This is called “shocking” and is a great technique for any vegetables that you want to pre-cook for pasta salad, vegetable trays, etc.
Shock the green beans, shock the green beans.
Prove just how old you are if you read that last sentence to the tune of Peter Gabriel’s song, “Shock the Monkey.”
Moving on….add the chopped green onions to the bowl of cooked potatoes. Season the potatoes with 1 teaspoon of salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Drain the shocked beans and add them and the sliced tomatoes to the bowl.
For the dressing, squeeze the juice from 1/2 a lemon into a measuring cup – about 1 Tablespoon. Either use a strainer or pick out any wayward seeds from the lemon.
Add 1 teaspoon of Dijon Mustard and 1 Tablespoon of Whole Grain Mustard.
Most of the time I am all for making substitutions in recipes, however I don’t think there is any substitute for the grainy whole mustard seeds and flavor you get from this mustard. My store sells a couple of different varieties of whole grain mustard. Those little seeds are packed with great flavor. You’ll find that once you have whole grain mustard, you’ll use it on all sorts of things…sandwiches, salad dressing, burgers (!!!), even baked fish.
To complete the dressing, add light olive oil or salad oil (but not extra virgin olive oil – it’s too strong for the light flavors of this salad) up to the 1/2 cup mark on the measuring cup. Whisk it all together and season with a little salt & pepper.
Pour about 2/3 of the dressing over the vegetables and mix it all together.
I like to add only a portion of the dressing so you can control the amount. Give it a good stir to coat all the vegetables. If you need more dressing, you can add it as you go.
For the best flavor, cover the salad and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Serve at room temperature and be happy.
Here’s the recipe: