Warm potato salad with red onion, dill and wholegrain mustard

20090214-WarmPotatoSaladTit 

Some things are just better warm.

The weather.

Bread.

Feet.

Showers.

And, umm, salads.

Well, that's what my brother used to tell my mom when she made potato salad. 

I think it started as an accident – one day my mom had left the boiling of the potatoes for the salad rather too late, and after hurriedly chopping and mixing, she brought the salad to the table still warm.  It was love at first bite for my brother, and from that day on potato salad in our house always had to be served warm.  If it had been made well in advance, it had to microwaved so that it could be served warm.  It was just better that way :)

With the chilly weather we've been having here, the idea of a cold potato salad sounds tremendously unappealing, so when I served some peppered smoked mackerel fillets for lunch the other day, my thoughts turned naturally to my brother's beloved warm potato salad.  To add some colour and to cut through the richness of the mackerel, I tossed in some finely diced red onions, a good dollop of wholegrain mustard, and some dried dill.

Dill (Anethum graveolens) is a herb that's been cultivated since Roman times and probably originated in Eastern Europe.  It's a member of the carrot family and is closely related to fennel  Both the seeds and leaves are eaten.  Here are some bits and pieces for the herb trivia buffs:

  • In the northeastern U.S. and adjoining parts of Canada, dill seed is sometimes known as "meeting-seed". This is because the Puritans and Quakers would give their children dill seeds to chew during long church meetings, due to dill's mild hunger-suppressant qualities.

  • In medieval Europe it was believed that dill protected against curses and witchcraft. It was also thought to make one drowsy.

  • One tablespoon of dill seed contains more calcium than a cup of milk. 

I'm submitting this to Cheryl of Gluten-Free Goddess who is hosting this week's edition of Weekend Herb Blogging, the event conceived by my friend Kalyn and now administered by the lovely Haalo. 

PotatoSaladCollage

WARM POTATO SALAD WITH RED ONION, DILL AND WHOLEGRAIN MUSTARD (serves 2)

Ingredients:

2 large waxy potatoes
2 Tbsp finely diced red onion
2 Tbsp good mayonnaise
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1/2 tsp dried dill
salt and pepper

Method:

Boil the potatoes, then place them in cold water to cool down.  When cool enough to touch, peel and chop into large cubes.

Add all the other ingredients and mix well.  Check seasonin and add salt and black pepper to taste.  Serve while the potatoes are still warm, with smoked pepper mackerel fillets and a green salad.

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  1. says

    This sounds delicious Jeanne. I have previously posted on a similar combination of ingredients but for pasta with smoked salmon – includes the same elements of whole grain mustard, red onion and dill – they seem to really complement each other.

  2. says

    Hhhmm, that sounds like a great winter alternative to potato salad. I love potato salad, but you are right it is too cold at the moment for the usual kind!
    P.S. I am hosting an expat blog carnival on my blog this weekend. I don’t know if this is your thing but if you have any interesting or funny stories about life as an expat, you can give me the links in the comments section of my blog tommorrow.

  3. says

    My partner prefers potato salad warm too which is quite good when I make it at the last moment and don’t need to cool it down – and with the weather you are having I am sure it is much nicer warm than cold!

  4. says

    Jeanne, Your photo and your potato salad looks so good. I really haven’t had good potato salad since last summer, thanks for giving me the itch! Thanks for all your nice comments today on my blog.
    xox, Marie

  5. says

    At first when I saw the title of this, I was sad and forlorn. It sounds like the most wonderful salad but fresh dill here is just a little blah at this time of year.
    But clever you! You use dried dillweed. I always think that dry and fresh dill are basically two different herbs but I love both of them. (I just forget about dried dill….)
    Remind me to buy some waxy potatoes (I’m thinking red skinned would be nice.)