Last week, Melissa of Schweet 'N Savory emailed me and asked if I'd be her guest blogger. Of course I said "yes." That was an easy part. The hard part was trying to figure out what I should cook and talk about. After giving this dilemma some thought, I decided to make Russian Potato Salad (Olivie in Russian).
Ever since I was a little girl, I remember this salad being an integral part of every single birthday, holiday and celebration. My mom would make ginormous amounts of this potato salad, and we would eat the leftovers for several days, as the flavors got better with each additional day. Whoever would eat the last portion was not a very popular person in our household.
As Anna (my twin) and I grew older, my mom assigned us tasks of cubing potatoes, carrots, and other vegetables. I can still hear her telling us that our cubes weren't small enough! It was important to cut all vegetables in a uniform way. Eventually, Anna and I took over making the entire salad: quite a lengthy process, but very much worth it.
This past weekend I had 3 days off: just enough time to make the salad and have enough leftovers to savor for days.
I suppose I should now tell you what's included in this salad: potatoes, carrots, canned green peas, eggs, pickles, mayonnaise, onion (optional), Granny Smith apple (optional), and dill. There are quite a few variations on the basic theme: you can add defrosted peas, boiled chicken, even hot dogs! The key to this salad, in my opinion, is the mayonnaise: I truly love the flavor it adds to the otherwise healthy vegetables.
Ingredients (these are just some guidelines: feel free to add more or less depending on your preference)
1 can of peas
6 baby dill pickles
1/2 Granny Smith apple
1. Cook potatoes, carrots, and eggs. It is very important not to overcook the vegetables: you don't want the salad to turn into a mush. At the same time, however, using undercooked potatoes is a crime in my book :) [Note: I cooked potatoes and carrots without peeling them first; my mom, however, recommended peeling carrots first: she is absolutely right! Follow her advice.]
2. Once the potatoes, carrots and eggs are cool, peel and cube them.
3. Cube pickles, and add them to the potato/carrot/egg mixture.
4. Add chopped Granny Smith apple, a can of peas and enough mayonnaise to mix everything together.
5. Season with salt and pepper, and if you want add finely chopped onion.
6. Let the salad sit in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.
7. Garnish the salad with dill, and you are done!
I really hope some of you will try this recipe: it does take a bit of time, but the results are worthy! For those of you have have children, siblings, and/or significant others, this is a great "family" project!
Thank you, Melissa, for inviting me to be your guest blogger!