Local and seasonal food has always been with us. Yes, you can't avoid it at the moment with 100 mile diets and seasonal cookbooks galore but the fact is, if you ask any farmer, that's how they have always eaten. It wasn't until I came to this area that I had ever eaten corn (on the cob as we Brits call it!) I had eaten an insipid version before but the difference was night and day - much like the way people feel about heirloom tomatoes. To me, seasonal should be simple. It is the time of year when just the produce itself is so flavourful that I can't bear to load it down with lots of spices and added flavourings. We may have to do that in the winter, but right now, the fruit or vegetable itself is enough.
A case in point is the scary white potato salads you see sold in stores- again a new and slightly alarming experience for me. I guess people eat it out of nostalgia, or because that's what they're used to? For me a potato should taste, well, like a potato... earthy and sweet.
With this in mind, my current favourite side dish is a really simple potato salad. With just four ingredients it's a doddle to make. The potato stays as the star of the show but is subtly highlighted by the soft and sharp flavours of the dressing.
It will take you about 5 minutes to make the dressing. add on the time the potatoes take to cook and you're done. You can serve it warm or cold and it will keep in a fridge for up to 4 days. let it come to room temperature before having it if you can so the flavours aren't chilled out of it.
Mustard Potato Salad
- 3lbs new potatoes
- 3tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- Juice of one lemon
- 3 green onions chopped- including the green!
Cook the potatoes in a large pan of salted water. Don't cut them up, they will keep their flavour much better if boiled whole.
Whisk together the mustard, olive oil and lemon juice, chop the green onions.
Drain the potatoes and leave them to cool down for a few minutes. at this point you can chop any larger ones.
Toss everything together and leave to cool to room temperature
You don't need me to tell you how versatile this dish could be- BBQ's, pizzas, picnics, salad buffets, there isn't a summer meal that wouldn't become just that little bit better with a dish of this salad!