Batata Salata (Lebanese Potato Salad)

Sitto's Batata Salata | She Paused 4 Thought

Outdoor entertaining just got elevated with this gorgeous potato salad. It is perfect for picnics and potlucks because is it doesn’t contain any mayonnaise—just fresh herbs, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil. The blend of red, white & purple potatoes makes this lighter version of potato salad a show-stopper.

Batata Salata is just one of many interesting Lebanese dishes from Julie Taboulie, “The Queen of Lebanese Cuisine,” PBS Hostess, and author of the new cookbook Julie Taboulie’s Lebanese Kitchen.

Julie Taboulie Cookbook | She Paused 4 Thought

Her easy-to-follow approach to Mediterranean home cooking emphasizes fresh, seasonal ingredients with healthy cooking techniques.

I recently Julie met at a media meet-and-greet luncheon, culinary demonstration, and cookbook signing at Melissa’s Produce.

Julie Taboulie | She Paused 4 Thought

There, she demonstrated how to easily stuff Swiss chard; we tasted the dish, along with a sampling of other delicacies from her book, each more delicious than the other. Not only was her food fantastic, but her lively passion for cooking and teaching was inspiring.

Here are a few of the recipes we sampled.

Hummus-bar | She Paused 4 Thought

Hummus Bar with Pita Chips pg. 14

Malfouf Salata | She Paused 4 Thought

Sitto’s Malfouf Salata (Grandmother’s Cabbage Salad) p. 42

Taboulie | She Paused 4 Thought

Taboulie pg. 37

| She Paused 4 Thought

Makbouseh (Summer Squash Stew) pg. 65

Stuffed Swiss Chard Leaves | She Paused 4 Thought

Mahshi Silik (Stuffed Swiss Chard Leaves) pg. 102

Maamoul (Patterned semolina cookies with three fillings) pg. 263

Today’s Recipe

This delightful version of potato salad is inspired from Julie’s “Sitto” (grandmother in Lebanese).

I doubled the recipe and used 1 bag of Baby Dutch Yellow Potatoes, Baby Purple Potatoes & Baby Red Potatoes from Melissa’s Produce.

If you are traveling with this dish, keep the purple potatoes separate from the white & red potatoes, as they tend to “bleed” color, and add the fresh herbs at the last minute.

Sitto's Batata Salata | She Paused 4 Thought

Sitto's Batata Salata
Cuisine: Lebanese
This gorgeous potato salad is perfect for picnics & potlucks because is it doesn’t contain any mayonnaise—just fresh herbs, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil.
  • 6 gold "creamer" (small size) potatoes
  • 6 red "creamer" (small size) potatoes
  • 6 purple (small size) potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 scallions, ends trimmed, green and white parts thinly sliced
  • 1 small bunch fresh chives, finely sliced
  • ½ bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 small bunch fresh mint leaves, sliced into thin strips
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • Pinch of sea salt, plus more as needed
  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  1. Put the gold and red potatoes in a large pot with cold water to cover and place over high heat, leaving the pot uncovered. Put the purple potatoes in a separate medium pot, so that their natural color does not color the other potato varieties. Cover with cold water and place over high heat, uncovered. When both pots come to a rolling boil, immediately reduce the heat and simmer the potatoes for 10 to 15 minutes, just until they are fork-tender; do not overcook!
  2. Drain the potatoes and set aside until they are cool enough to handle.
  3. Meanwhile, make the vinaigrette: Mash the garlic cloves and the pinch of salt in a mortar and pestle until it forms a smooth paste. Slowly add the olive oil and lemon juice and whisk or stir vigorously until all the ingredients are well combined. Set aside.
  4. Once the potatoes have cooled slightly but are still warm, remove the skins using a small, sharp knife, then cut the potatoes into quarters. Place in a large mixing bowl, and season with a teaspoon of salt. Pour the dressing over the potatoes and thoroughly toss to coat entirely.
  5. Sprinkle the scallions, chives, parsley, and mint over the potatoes, taste and season with additional salt, if needed. Serve warm immediately, or make ahead, chill and serve cold.
Serves: 6

Julie’s approach to cooking her native cuisine makes it so easy and unintimidating; I have really enjoyed cooking from her Lebanese Kitchen cookbook. Last weekend I made her Lahem Mishwee (lamb meat and onion skewers) with much success.

skewers | She Paused 4 Thought

There are so many recipes I want to try. I have a feeling this book will be my constant companion all summer!

Thanks Julie, for helping make my summer so tasty.
…and then, she paused for thought.


Disclaimer: I was given a copy of Julie Taboulie’s Lebanese Kitchen cookbook to cook with. All opinions are my own. This post may contain Amazon affiliate links for your convenience, at no additional cost to you.

About Cathy Arkle

Cathy Arkle is a food blogger, culinary explorer, graphic artist, and cooking class junkie. Her inspirations come from her travels across the globe (50 countries) in the last 20+ years partaking in various ethnic cuisines while working as a graphic artist for major networks (NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX & ESPN). She has collected a few Emmys in the field of graphic design for sports & entertainment. Cathy is also a graduate of the Pro Chef courses at The New School of Cooking in Culver City, CA

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18 Responses to Batata Salata (Lebanese Potato Salad)

  1. Natalie June 22, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

    I was so sad to miss this! Everything looks absolutely wonderful!!

    • Cathy Arkle June 22, 2017 at 6:22 pm #

      Thanks Natalie, you would have really loved Julie and her cooking. Her cookbook is full of recipes that fit into the vegetarian lifestyle.

  2. Mary June 23, 2017 at 2:43 pm #

    That was one of the best luncheons we have attended at Melissa’s, and such a gracious author!

  3. Sue @ It's Okay to Eat the Cupcake June 23, 2017 at 4:46 pm #

    Everything looks wonderful! I love the idea of a vinaigrette with potato salad, especially for hot days…and this lemon and olive oil is so easy and delicious!

    • Cathy Arkle July 5, 2017 at 10:23 pm #

      Thanks Sue! It really is perfect summer food.

  4. myimpkitchen June 26, 2017 at 6:51 am #

    What a wonderful review and great recipe. Your pictures are stunning, as always. I’m sorry to have missed it, so thank you for sharing!!!

    • ShePaused4Thought June 26, 2017 at 12:25 pm #

      Thanks Sara! The food was wonderful and I am really enjoying this cookbook. We missed you.

  5. Agness of Run Agness Run June 26, 2017 at 7:36 am #

    I’ve never tried a Lebanese dish, but this salad seems mouth-watering!

    • Cathy Arkle July 5, 2017 at 9:36 pm #

      I hope you try it Agness, I think you will really like it.

  6. Carolyn Jung June 26, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

    What a gorgeous potato salad! No wonder it was such a hit. The colors alone are irresistible.

  7. nusrat2010 July 10, 2017 at 4:08 pm #

    The author of the cookbook and her potato salad both have got pretty, all-smile face 🙂 Never heard of a potato salad without mayonnaise!

    Thank you, Cathy, for the interesting post and recipe, as always <3 Hugs

    • Cathy Arkle July 12, 2017 at 1:39 pm #

      Being from the Midwest, I wasn’t familiar with non-mayo potato salad either. I am sure glad I know about this recipe, it is a game-changer.

  8. sippitysup July 11, 2017 at 7:34 am #

    Your purple potatoes stayed purple! GREG

    • Cathy Arkle July 12, 2017 at 1:40 pm #

      Probably because they are slightly undercooked.

  9. Christina Conte July 11, 2017 at 8:58 am #

    This is very similar to Italian potato salad (which makes sense being Mediterranean)! Such healthy and nutritious dishes! That lamb looks incredibly tasty, too! Sorry I missed this event!

    • Cathy Arkle July 12, 2017 at 1:41 pm #

      Christina you would have really enjoyed all of the food from this cookbook. So fresh and full of flavor.

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