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When you want to rustle up a super fast delicious dish which never fails to please, here’s the thing for you. How could one go wrong with bacon and potatoes? Actually quite easily if you burn the bacon and overcook the potatoes making them feathery, but we won’t look at that. I’ve been making this dish for years now and love to put a fresh herb in it as it breaks the monotony and adds flavour. I also keep it very simple. This time I used chives, which grows readily in the backyard of my family home. You can use finely chopped coriander leaves or fresh parsley or dill too. If you want a no-fuss vegetarian option you could simply omit the bacon or add finely chopped gherkins or even pickled jalapeño for a mild kick. If you don’t get jalapeños or gherkins you can add finely chopped fresh green chillies after removing the seeds for a bit of heat.
In my family home in North Bengal, we get these lovely potatoes with a slight reddish skin. They’re starchy and excellent for potato salads as they don’t get feathery, so I made the most of those today. Made the mayonnaise too, which was so simple and fresh. This dish is is simple, with very little ingredients but tastes very good. It’s comfort food, slightly calorific (but hey, you got to live a little) and an excellent side dish that goes with almost anything. Use it with a pasta, a roast, chops, cutlets or even grilled meats and vegetables.
I like to chop everything really fine. The potatoes should not be too large, the onions and herbs should be diced super fine. There’s nothing as off-putting as chomping on a huge pungent chunk of onion when you’re least expecting it. Chopping everything fine allows you to get a nice blend of flavours without any one ingredient overpowering the other. By now you would have figured that I probably have a mild form of OCD huh? Maybe. Anyway, I’m going to stop yapping now, and let you get to it.
Ingredients (Serves 6)
600 gms potatoes boiled, peeled and cubed
1 large onion diced finely
10 stalks of chives chopped finely
2/3 tsp salt
250 gms bacon cut into 1 cm squares
5 heaped tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tsp Dijon or any other mustard (optional)
- In a large bowl mix the potatoes, onion, chives and salt together. Set aside.
- Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a non-stick frying pan and add the bacon. Fry the bacon till crisp and remove onto a plate with an absorbent napkin on top. When cooled, add to the potatoes.
- Add the mayonnaise and the vinegar and mustard (optional to the potatoes and mix well. Check the seasoning (salt levels) and when satisfied put in a serving dish and either serve immediately or refrigerate it to serve later.
Important notes: Be conservative with the salt at first. The bacon is salty anyway so you don’t want an overdose. If the salad does become too salty boil two or three more potatoes and add them with a bit more mayo and vinegar.
If you’re putting the potato salad in the fridge you may have to add a bit more mayonnaise so that it doesn’t dry out.