arugula pesto potato salad
The sun is finally out again and the days are officially getting longer. You have no idea how happy this makes me. Goodbye blurry yellowish food photos taken at night and hello gorgeous photos of what we’re eating for dinner! Spring is my absolute favorite time of the year, not only thanks to all the delicious produce this season brings back to my kitchen, but also because I can’t wait to get back out in the sun and enjoy my garden. This year I plan on eating lots of meals outside on my terrace, enjoying the warm weather to the fullest.
With Spring on its way, I wanted to share with you a light potato salad — one that is mayo-free and that is perfect for BBQ season which is right around the corner. Although I love a good mayonnaise potato salad, we all know that it’s not the healthiest salad option out there, so when I’m craving something lighter I turn to pestos to dress up my potatoes.
To speed up the cooking process, I chose to slice my potatoes into 0.5cm-thick circles and boiled them for 6 to 8 minutes, just until they could easily be pierced with a fork. Once cooked, I drained them to remove all the liquid, reserving 1/8 cup of the cooking water to add to my pesto later on. It doesn’t really matter if some of the potatoes look mushy; once you combine them with the pesto many of the circles will fall apart. It is important to let the potatoes cool down before mixing them with the pesto and the rest of the salad ingredients.
Making the pesto is even easier. All you’ll need is a food processor, in which you will have to combine the arugula, one garlic clove, olive oil, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Pulse the ingredients a couple of times until you obtain a pesto, then slowly add the reserved cooking water until the mixture is slightly watery but still full of flavor. Pour this pesto over the potatoes and add some chopped green onion and celery. Carefully combine all the ingredients and you’re ready for your first BBQ of the season!
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- 600g potatoes
- 3 cups arugula
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
- 1 green onion, white and green part chopped
- 1 celery stalk, chopped
- Scrub the potatoes and slice them into 0.5cm-thick rounds.
- Bring a pot of water to boil with a pinch of salt. Add the potatoes and boil them for 5 to 7 minutes until cooked through. The potatoes are ready when they can be easily pierced with a fork, but still hold together. Reserve ⅛ cup of the cooking water and drain the potatoes in a colander. Let cool completely.
- In a food processor, combine the arugula, garlic, olive oil, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Process until the mixture becomes a paste. Slowly add the reserved cooking water and blend; the mixture should be slightly watery. Adjust seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed.
- In a big bowl, combine the cooked sliced potatoes with the green onion, celery stalk and remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Pour the arugula pesto over the potato salad and toss the salad to coat all the potato slices in the pesto. Adjust seasoning if needed and serve at room temperature.