With warmer weather now here, many of us are dining outdoors a lot more and firing up the grill for dinner. Nothing like grilled meat, poultry or seafood, but what to serve with your grilled entree? Vegetable salads are great side dishes for grilled seafood or meat and can be prepared ahead of time which is always helpful. I have always been a big fan of potato salad, and although I do like mayonnaise based versions as well, one of my favorite ways to make my potato salad is with an oil and vinegar dressing like this one. Roasted peppers, capers and crisp pieces of pancetta add both color and flavor, and salads like this one are much safer to pack up for picnics in place of mayonnaise based ones. You can also add chopped black olives or blanched green beans to this salad as I have done in the past, or even replace the parsley with some chopped arugula. I generally use Yukon Gold or red skinned potatoes for my potato salads, and I also like to use Chianti red wine vinegar as I find it has more flavor than just regular red wine vinegar.
Deborah Mele 2012
Italian Style Potato Salad
A red wine vinegar dressing replaces mayonnaise in this potato salad with an Italian twist.
- 3 Pounds Potatoes, Peeled & Cut Into 2 Inch Pieces
- 1 Medium Red Onion, Peeled & Chopped
- 1/3 Cup Chopped Pancetta, Cooked Until Crisp
- 1 Red Sweet Pepper, Roasted & Cut Into Strips
- 1/3 Cup Chopped Fresh Parsley
- 2 Tablespoons Capers, Chopped
- 1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 to 3 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
- Salt & Pepper
- In a large saucepan, cover potatoes with cold water by an inch, then bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, about 15 minutes.
- Drain well in a colander and let cool to room temperature.
- Add the onion, pancetta, capers, red peppers, parsley, salt and pepper to taste.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.
- Pour the dressing over the potato mixture and gently toss to mix.
- Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator until ready to use.