Homemade potato salad -- a summer classic


Repeat after me: No more yellow muck! No more yellow muck!

It's time to stand up for all that is right with homemade potato salad.

Now I can't take credit for starting the no-more-yellow-muck movement, but I warmly embrace humorist Garrison Keillor's cause du jour. And let me second the notion that the condition of this nation's potato salad is absolutely no laughing matter.

OK, I did laugh myself silly reading Keillor's essay to a co-worker. It's just gross to bring "eerie-yellow store-bought stuff in tubs" and present them like some sort of prize at the family picnic.

If you're going to plunk down plastic buckets bought at a convenience store (with the price stickers still on, no less!) you'd better make up some pretty darn good excuses.

You can start with "My dog ate the recipe," but they should get better and end with at least one grievous injury to your mixing hand or your texting thumb.

"It is not that hard to make potato salad, people," Keillor scolds. "Take half an hour away from your Facebook page and do the job right."

So true. If you can boil water, you can make potato salad.

Heavy on the citrus notes, The Star's Roasted Tomato Potato Salad is its own summertime zinger. Even better, the simple recipe cautiously skirts the whole issue of what all that mayonnaise and artificial color might be doing to your arteries, let alone your taste buds.

Though it may lack crunch, alas, Mr. Keillor, I think it's a homemade potato salad that is worthy.

Cooking tip:
Hey, when we say fresh-squeezed lemon juice, we mean it. It's just plain lazy to buy a plastic fruit, and it will taste tinny besides.

Roasted tomato potato salad

Servings: 16 (1-cup)

1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes
2 pounds new potatoes, unpeeled
6 green onions (white and green portions), chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1 1/2 cups chopped Italian (flat-leaf) parsley

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange tomatoes on a jelly roll pan and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until tomatoes have burst and are roasted; set aside.

Cook potatoes in a large pan of boiling water 15 to 20 minutes or until just tender. Cool and cut each into about eight bite-size pieces.

Place potatoes and onions in a large bowl. Whisk together garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, cumin and coriander; pour over potatoes and toss to coat.

Sprinkle with parsley and add roasted tomatoes. Stir gently. Serve at room temperature.

Nutrition info:
Per serving: 87 calories (30 percent from fat), 3 grams total fat (trace saturated fat), no cholesterol, 13 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein, 10 milligrams sodium, 1 gram dietary fiber.

-- Recipe developed for The Star by professional home economists Kathryn Moore and Roxanne Wyss.


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