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.
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.
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 with Pita Chips pg. 14
Sitto’s Malfouf Salata (Grandmother’s Cabbage Salad) p. 42
Taboulie pg. 37
Makbouseh (Summer Squash Stew) pg. 65
Mahshi Silik (Stuffed Swiss Chard Leaves) pg. 102
Maamoul (Patterned semolina cookies with three fillings) pg. 263
This delightful version of potato salad is inspired from Julie’s “Sitto” (grandmother in Lebanese).
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.
- 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
- 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!
- Drain the potatoes and set aside until they are cool enough to handle.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
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.
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.