While I love those classic mayonnaise-based potato salads, I think they should only be eaten during summer barbecues when there are platefuls and platefuls of ribs nearby. I know...so cliche, but kinda true. :P So what to do when craving potato salad, but without any ribs (or grill, or backyard for that matter)?
After trying this recipe, I'd actually recommend ditching the creamy, all-American version for a more "grown up" adaptation instead. 100% mayonnaise-free, this warm potato salad has an unique, almost tangy flavor to it that comes from its whole grain mustard and lemon juice base. The capers, chopped shallots and parsley are also a nice addition which give it a sophisticated and bright taste. And here's the catcher -- it goes with just about everything (which is great for grill-less, backyard-less losers like us!).
I decided to pair this with spicy oven-fried chicken to add some crispiness to the meal. Per my mother's method, I always bake "fried" chicken in the oven...but it's usually with an Asian-based marinade of soy sauce, sherry, sesame oil, garlic and ginger instead. This was my first time making American-style fried chicken (we in Ameeeeerica!), so I wasn't sure what to expect.
Well, the satisfying crunch and crispiness of typical fried chicken was still the same (bonus points for grated parmesan cheese in the breading), but the flavor was much different. The marinade of buttermilk and hot sauce/pepper definitely came through in the chicken meat...and while that was delicious, I think I still prefer the Asian version instead :D
Regardless of marinade, I would highly recommend "frying" your fried chicken in the oven. It tastes exactly like the real thing, but without all the oil and fat.
Potato Salad with Capers, Shallots and Mustard
Recipe from Blue Kitchen
1-1/2 pounds small red potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 teaspoons whole grain mustard
4 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 cup capers [chopped if large]
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots [about 1 medium]
2/3 cup roughly chopped parsley
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
While the potatoes are cooking, whisk the olive oil, mustard and lemon juice together in a small bowl. As soon as the potatoes are cooled enough to handle [but only just—you want this dish warm], slice them into halves and place them in a large bowl. Whisk the dressing again to combine, drizzle it over the potatoes and stir gently with a wooden spoon to coat potatoes. Add the capers, shallots and parsley to the bowl and stir gently to combine. Adjust seasonings with salt [if needed] and pepper. Serve immediately.
Spicy Oven-Fried Chicken
Adapted from Bon Appetit, June 2000
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons hot pepper sauce
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 large onion, sliced
12 chicken thighs with skin and bones
1 cup dry unseasoned breadcrumbs
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Whisk buttermilk, oil, hot pepper sauce, mustard, garlic, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper in large bowl to blend well. Add onion, then chicken and turn to coat. Cover; chill at least 3 hours or up to 1 day, turning chicken occasionally.
Place racks on 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Whisk breadcrumbs, cheese, flour, thyme, paprika, cayenne and 1 teaspoon salt in large baking dish to blend. Remove chicken from marinade, allowing excess to drip off. Add chicken to breadcrumb mixture and turn to coat completely. Arrange chicken, skin side up, on racks on baking sheets. Let stand 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Lightly coat the chicken with Pam Cooking Spray. Bake until crisp, golden and cooked through, about 30-45 minutes.