Tag Archives: potato

Beet and Potato Salad (Salade Russe)

Beet and Potato Salad (Salade Russe) from Taste Love & Nourish

This salad brings back so many memories for me…

My Mom and Dad entertained a lot. As soon as the last guest would leave, my sisters and I would bee-line to the kitchen. Like a production line, we’d empty out the fridge of all of the “party” food, rip the plastic wrap off of everything and sit around the table noshing. I have no idea how this routine ever began, but I so enjoyed it. I was really little, but I do know, that the Salade Russe was always my most favorite post-party-midnight-snack. My Mom made this often when she entertained. I remember it being on every holiday table my entire life.

Let’s address the white pink elephant in the room, shall we? As I photographed this, I kept wondering what you’d think of a pink potato salad. I get it. It’s odd. Truly, this is incredibly delicious. So much so, that I will confess, I ate so much of it after setting up my photo shoot…then rushed to get it done so I could eat some more. And…really, with spring and Easter celebrations around the corner, wouldn’t this be the perfect shade of pink? *wink-wink*

Salade Russe or Russian Salad has so many variations. Some include beets, but the original did not. You may never find two identical recipes. They can include any combination of vegetables and some even include pickles and meats. Its roots date back to the 1800′s, created by a famous chef in Moscow. It is actually a very popular salad in most of Europe. In the United States, traditional potato salad is commonplace, this version…not so much. Let’s change that.

I’ve lightened up my Mom’s recipe. In place of mayonnaise, I use a nice thick Greek yogurt. I do add a smidgen of mayo just for a bit of flavor, but you can certainly leave it out. Traditional Salade Russe is made with vinegar and a bit of mustard. I love the freshness of lemon instead. It adds a nice brightness that you can’t get from the vinegar.

Beet and Potato Salad (Salade Russe) from Taste Love & Nourish

Beet and Potato Salad (Salade Russe)

1 lb. russet potatoes (about 2 large), cut into 1/2 inch dice
1/2 C. frozen peas, thawed in a colander
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1/2 C. celery heart with leaves, finely sliced
1 large carrot, finely diced
8 oz. roasted beets (about 3 beets), cut into 1/2 inch dice
3 T. fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/4 C. non fat plain Greek yogurt
1 T. mayonnaise
3 T. extra virgin olive oil
2 T. fresh lemon juice
1 t. sea salt
1/2 t. black pepper

In a medium saucepan, add the cubes of potato and cover with water to an inch above the potatoes. Add a bit of sea salt to the water. Place the pan on high heat on the stove and bring to a rapid boil, stirring occasionally. Once the water boils, the potatoes will cook quickly, in about 2 to 3 minutes (or longer if the cubes are larger). Test by sticking a fork in the center of a cube. If it splits, it’s done. Immediately, remove from the heat and drain in a colander. Rinse the potatoes gently with cold water to stop the cooking. Set colander of potatoes aside.

Once you are done chopping all of your vegetables, whisk to combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables and the potatoes to the bowl. Gently, using a rubber spatula, fold to combine all of the ingredients. Chill in the fridge for several hours before serving.

Serves 6

    Notes:

  • This salad is even better the next day and the color deepens as well. Just give it a nice toss before serving.
  • For entertaining a larger crowd, feel free to double this recipe.
  • You can roast your own beets or look for pre-cooked beets packaged in the produce section.

 

Beet and Potato Salad (Salade Russe) from Taste Love & Nourish

Leek and Potato Soup

This soup is so creamy and delicious, but you'd never know it's actually very light and low in fat!

One of the things I love most about cooler weather is making big pots of soups. There is something so simple and comforting about it. It’s the whole process that appeals to me. Chopping, sautéing, simmering…it’s my zen. I’ll admit…I’m a complete food geek.

Leek and potato soup is so classic and has been done many times over. Leeks are like a really mild onion and pair nicely with the potato which gives body and a creaminess. I love creamy soups like this, but I don’t love the fat that usually comes with them. After some experimenting with different methods, I think I found a way to make you feel like this can’t possibly be low in fat! I use canned evaporated milk in place of the whole milk and heavy cream found in a lot of recipes. It’s a great substitute for cream. If you have reservations about using the canned evaporated milk, I’ll give you a recipe to make it yourself from home. It’s super easy…just a matter of simmering it down.

To me, one of the most important parts of simple soups like this one, is the garnish. This is my personal feeling…I’m saving so much in fat in the soup itself, I don’t feel the least bit badly about browning up some croutons in just a bit of browned butter to air drop into the hot soup. I love to hear that sizzle as it hits and taste that buttery crunch floating within. You don’t need a lot, just a few cubes create a nutty explosion. If that doesn’t do it for you…try grated cheese, chopped herbs like chives or parsley, crumbled bits of bacon or pancetta or just as is. Anyway you eat this, I think you’ll love it and be surprised at just how creamy it really is!

This soup is so creamy and delicious, but you'd never know it's actually very light and low in fat!

 

Leek and Potato Soup

1 T. butter, divided
1/2 medium onion, diced
3 to 4 leeks, trimmed, cleaned and sliced
1 C.dry white wine
1 large bay leaf
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 1/5 lbs. (about 4) yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
6 C. vegetable or chicken broth
sea salt to taste if using homemade chicken broth
1 1/2 C. (12 oz.) low fat evaporated milk
black or white pepper

Special equipment: Immersion blender

In a large heavy pot over medium high heat, melt the butter then add the onions. Reduce the heat a bit and cook until onion just begins to soften. Add the leek and continue to soften without browning. As soon as the onions are translucent and the leeks have softened, increase the heat to medium high and add the white wine. Simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated. Add the bay leaf, thyme, potatoes and broth and cover. Bring the broth to a boil then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for about 45 minutes or until the leeks and the potatoes are tender.

Remove the pot from the heat. Using an immersion blender, blend until completey smooth and silky. Stir in the evaporated milk and season to taste with pepper.

Serve in bowls with your choice of garnish.

Serves about 8.

Notes:

  • For my crouton garnish, I melted about 2 T. of butter in a sauté pan and tossed 2 slices of cubed bread in and toasted until nice and brown and crisp. If you are using unsalted butter, give them a small pinch of sea salt. I also sprinkled a bit of fresh thyme leaves and finely diced red pepper…just because it’s pretty!
  • To make your own evaporated milk, simmer 3 cups of low fat milk in a saucepan over low heat on the stove until it has reduced to 1 1/2 cups. Do not boil the milk, just simmer it lightly.

 

This soup is so creamy and delicious, but you'd never know it's actually very light and low in fat!