My mom has taught me many valuable lessons over the years. Always bring a good book. Being sick/tired/cold is a state of mind. Do the crossword puzzle with a pen. And it’s perfectly okay to eat a plate of potatoes for dinner.
I refuse to give in to potato-bashing. You’ve heard it: too many carbs, makes you gain weight, barely any nutritional value. Most of these issues stem from what we put on them (cheese, sour cream) or how we prepare them (deep-fried). But potatoes are nutrient dense – they pack a good nutritional punch for the amount of calories they have. Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, fiber (both soluble and insoluble), iron, potassium, flavanoids… Humble, sometimes dirty (think B12!) and yes, unattractive, they are also versatile, tasty, satisfying, filling, easy to digest and they are perhaps the most tolerant of foods – absorbing, assuming and refining all flavors that come their way. The potato welcomes all comers, from broccoli, beans, and sauteed mushrooms to marinara sauce, plain ol’ catsup or a tangy, garlicky vinaigrette. Mash, cube, slice, or bake whole – it never complains.
No offering of salads would be complete without including the glorious spud. We ate this flavorful mess as a main dish over steamed baby spinach, but it makes a delicious side dish, too – and it travels well.
Olive, Sun-Dried Tomato & Caper Potato Salad
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (oil-packed), rinsed and patted dry
1-2 tbsp. vegetable broth
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
pinch salt and black pepper
Place potatoes in large pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Drain and let cool slightly before cutting into chunks and placing in a large bowl. Add the white wine vinegar, lemon zest, salt and pepper, parsley, cherry tomatoes and capers. Set aside.
In a food processor, combine the dressing ingredients and process until mostly smooth. Pour the dressing over the potatoes and gently toss to combine. Serve.