Potato and asparagus salad with lemon-basil dressing
When I was growing up, the only kind of salad that I thought had potatoes in it was the classic mayo smothered potato salad. But when I started eating traditional Mediterranean and Asian foods, I discovered there are all kinds of yummy salads that feature potatoes as one of the main ingredients. Salade Niçoise from the Provence region of France, and Indonesian Gado gado salad are just two examples. Over the years we’ve also developed our own potato salads using authentic Mediterranean ingredients, such as Greek potato salad (which is one of our all-time favorite salads) and Spanish potato, tuna and white bean salad.
About two years ago we also came up with this Italian-inspired potato and asparagus salad. And it was so good that whenever asparagus is in season we usually make up at least a couple of big batches.
It’s late autumn here in New Zealand at the moment, so asparagus isn’t in season. But a couple of days ago we were at the supermarket and saw a bunch of amazingly fresh looking imported asparagus. With this salad in mind, we couldn’t resist getting it. And even though the price of the asparagus was outrageous, we have absolutely no regrets!
12 asparagus spears — ends cut off, then cut into thirds
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
½ garlic clove — minced
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Variation: Use green beans instead of asparagus.