Here’s a simple supper-to-lunch dish. Best part is…this curry potato salad doesn’t have a hint of mayo — just tons of flavor! With interplays of Middle Eastern and Indian Subcontinent flavors, it’s big on taste — tahini, curry, fresh cilantro, chilies, and green onions all mixed together with fresh tasting lemon and cool creamy yogurt. And as a bonus, it’s a great make ahead for your next Sunday brunch — or bookmark this, you may find it’s just the perfect thing to make for your next summer barbecue.
The inspiration for this salad came from Subarna Bhattachan’s version which I stumbled upon in an old issue of Saveur magazine from September 2013…likely picked up at the airport on a return trip from Vancouver (as I was hungry for English magazines). I expect the Nepalese version was much spicier than my variation. Tangy and fresh tasting, this is a mildly spicy potato salad — that’s right, mildly spicy despite the chilies. More often than not, I pick up my chilies from the supermarket — a tricolor assortment of red, green and orange from Holland — simply called: “Dutch chilies” (which by the way, in case you are wondering, are quite similar to red Jalapeno or Fresno chilies). On the chile heat scale, that would be about a 6 from a 10. On the Scoville scale however, they deliver a mere fraction of the heat compared to the punch of Habanero or Birds’ Eye chilies.
I don’t really consider myself as having a weakness for potato salad, but after my recent trip to Spain and countless plates of “potatas bravas” devoured over the course of two weeks, I was…well…having a hankering for…potatoes. But something a little different, something new and undiscovered to my taste buds, something with a fusion of different flavors. Nutty tahini and curry. Sure, why not let’s up the potato salad game.
Speaking of which, I highly recommend cooking your potatoes with the skin on. They tend to cook better — it’s the secret to the perfect potato salad texture – it helps them avoid going mushy. It’s also easy to peel off the skins after they are cooked.
In terms of this salad, I’d also say it makes for great leftovers. We enjoyed it the next day served over a simple mesclun green salad tossed with chopped up Braeburn apple and a simple homemade French dressing. Ultra-lecker.
Tahini Curry Potato Salad
1 kg waxy potatoes, cleaned
1 tablespoon sesame oil
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 fresh red chilies, seeded and finely chopped
1 x 200 g container Greek yogurt
8 tablespoons tahini
1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
Zest and juice of 1 large organic lemon (about 4 tablespoons)
1 small bunch cilantro, chopped
3 green onions, finely chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1. In a large pot, cover the unpeeled potatoes with cold, salted water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Cook potatoes until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15-20 minutes, depending on size. Drain, let steam evaporate, cool slightly, then, using a paring knife, peel while still warm. Slice the peeled potatoes into a large bowl.
2. In a small bowl, add the yogurt, tahini, curry powder, lemon zest and juice. Season with salt and pepper. Mix well to combine. NOTE: Some Greek yogurts are creamier than others, so add a little extra olive oil if too thick.
3. Add the dressing to the potatoes along with the the cilantro and green onion. Stir to combine. Serve and enjoy!
Inspired and adapted from Saveur.