We’re smack dab in the middle of outdoor eating season and no matter where you live in North America, chances are you grew up eating potato salad at family picnics and BBQs. I love potato salad as much as the next person but I’ve had to learn how to lighten this side dish up quite a bit in order to make it fit within my lifestyle, because let’s face it, potato salad isn’t the most diet-friendly food going! The classic starchy white potato isn’t a great friend of the low-carb lifestyle and then you have your canola-based mayonnaise dressing to mix it all together.
I’m not big on eliminating favorite foods from your diet completely until you can find a delicious alternative you can live with, so let’s help you design your own potato salad so that you can enjoy a couple of scoops of the stuff at your next gathering.
Now, there are a few basic components to potato salad:
• starch (traditionally white potatoes)
• dressing (traditionally plain old mayo)
• seasoning (salt, pepper, pinch of cayenne)
• add-ins (boiled eggs, green onions)
All you have to do to design your very own potato salad is to change things up and mix and match, based on what you like and what fits into your diet.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
• Starch. Try sweet potatoes for a colorful and nutritious potato salad! Cooked cauliflower also makes an excellent stand in. If you still enjoy white potatoes, go ahead and use them, but buy organic if you can because potatoes are on the Dirty Dozen list.
• Dressing. A nice light vinaigrette is a delicious, light and safe alternative to mayo based dressing. Try some olive oil, grainy mustard, a squirt of lemon juice and a splash of vinegar! Or make your own mayo. All you really need is an egg, lemon juice, olive oil and a bit of patience!
• Seasoning. Don’t be afraid to play with herbs and spices! Toss in some dill if you like dill, add some paprika if you like smoke, add some curry if you like curry, and so on and so forth! You can’t break your potato salad so experiment and have fun.
• Add-ins. You can hardly have potato salad without some perfectly hard boiled eggs chopped up inside. Chop up some chives and pop them in. Experiment with pickles. Toss in capers, cucumbers, diced peppers, celery…whatever you have on hand!
And there you have it! Some inspiration to help you design your very own potato salad.
Leanne Ely, Your Dinner Diva