What could be more seasonal, and more frugal than potato salad? Not to mention, in many cases, more boring? Here is the prudent foodie answer - a potato salad full of flavorful, seasonal ingredients, like radishes and celery root (celeriac), that will liven up your summer. At the Farmer's Market, you can now get fresh new potatoes for your salad, and lots of great things to go with them. I've really been enjoying radishes this summer - French Breakfast, Easter Egg, Red - and have been adding their crispy snap of flavor to my potato salad. Also, celery root, which is usually very pricey in the grocery store, has been available for $2 - root, stems, leaves and all! You could make this potato salad and then use the stems in a stew or soup, if getting one dish out of it is not enough to make you feel prudent (actually, you need about half the celery root to make this potato salad, so you will want to do something else with the rest anyway). Celery root is also the base for the classic french salad remoulade, and it's mild celery flavor and chewy, crunchy texture, along with the pretty color, crunch, and peppery taste of the radishes, really peps up a potato salad. I prefer to make my own mayonaise; it's easy to do, takes just a couple minutes, and tastes far better than the stiff slimy stuff in the jar. If I want a thicker mayonnaise I use two egg yolks,for a looser mayo, I go with one whole egg. If you do use the stuff in the jar, I usually add a little milk, yogurt, or half and half to stretch it. You use less, have fewer calories, and getter a lighter, less oily potato salad. This salad also include two optional ingredients - torn lettuce leaves and lentils. The lettuce leaves lighten things up, and I think add flavor. The lentils, add protein, so if you put quite a lot of lettuce in there, and some lentils, you have a main dish salad! I have served this particular potato salad with both pulled pork with BBQ sauce, and wienerschnitzel, but it will be good with any summer meal.
Potato Salad with Celery Root and Radishes (Lentils optional)6-8 large radishes, shredded1/2 celery root (celeriac) bulb, shredded1- 1 1/2 pounds potatoes boiled, peeled, cooled and cubed3 scallions, sliced fine including an inch or two of the three green section2 or 3 TB chopped fresh italian parsley, or 1-2 TB chopped fresh tarragon2 cups lettuce leaves torn into fairly small pieces - best with leaf lettuce or a loose head lettuce like Bibb, or buttercrunch. Arugula would be nice too.1/3 cup fresh mayonnaise, or store bought with some yogurt, milk or cream added1 1/2 cup green lentils, cooked al dente and cooledsalt and pepper to tastePeel the celery root to remove the brown skin, and shred 1/2 of it in your food processor. Clean the radishes and take off the stem and root, shred in food processor. Peel, and cube boiled potatoes at room temperature. Put them all in a big bowl, along with the lettuce (and lentils if you are using them) and add the minced scallions, herbs and salt and pepper. Pour the mayonnaise over the whole thing and stir gently. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper if necessary. Enjoy! Dee Dee