Happy Spring! With sunny (and hopefully warm!) days ahead, my mind turns to those classic outdoor dishes – I’m talking grilled burgers, frozen treats, and fresh berries by the handful. This past summer, I discovered, and subsequently became a huge fan of this lemon and mint potato salad – with one personal tweak, the addition of dill. The lemon is bright, while the mixture of herbs and green onions add a punch of flavor that is worthy of at least two helpings. The one thing this ‘salad’ is missing? The actual salad.
The remedy? Toss it over a bed of spinach of course. While you’re at it, add some red onion and radish for bite, and crumbled bacon for a salty crunch. The warmness of the creamy and herbed potatoes, marries perfectly with the fresh bite of the vegetables below it. It is bright with flavor, and warming in that wilted-spinach-salad sort of way. It is a perfect salad for this transitional season that we’re entering; whether paired with a burger on a warm day, or a pork roast on a cool one.
1 lb. baby potatoes
1/2 cup olive oil
4 sprigs of dill, fronds only
4 sprigs of mint, de-stemmed and slivered
juice from 1/2 of a lemon (1 – 1 1/2 tbl)
4 cups fresh spinach
4 slices of bacon
4-5 radishes, thinly sliced
1/3 red onion, thinly sliced
salt and pepper to taste
Turn on your oven to 400 degrees. Lay bacon strips on a cooling rack, over a baking sheet. Once the oven is preheated, place the bacon in the oven for 18-22 minutes until cooked through and slightly crunchy (depending on the thickness of your bacon). Alternately, you can cook the bacon stove-top.
Submerge potatoes in a pot of water, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cook for 15-20 minutes, until they are fully cooked through.
While the potatoes and bacon are cooking, mix the olive oil, lemon juice, dill, and mint together. Season it with salt and pepper to your liking. Thinly slice the radish and red onion, and place them on top of the spinach in a serving bowl.
Once the bacon is cooked through (ideally before the potatoes are done, but it’s okay if not), cut them into thick (roughly 1/4″) slices. Arrange them on top of your spinach/radish/red onion bed.
Once the potatoes are cooked through, strain them. Working quickly, smash the potatoes by placing the side of a wide knife over the top of the potato, and carefully push/smack your palm onto the knife. This should slightly open the potato, while still keeping the skin mostly in tact. For any larger pieces of potato, you can first cut it in half, and then proceed to smash it. Once all of the potatoes have been smashed, place them in a bowl and cover them with the dressing. You will find that they will absorb most of the dressing, while leaving a little behind.
Place potatoes on top of the spinach/veggie bed, scraping all of the dressing from the bowl. If there is hardly any dressing remaining, add a drizzle of olive oil, and a squeeze of lemon over the top of everything.
*Note: If the potatoes are still warm, you may find that they will wilt the spinach slightly. If you prefer that this not happen, wait until the potatoes have cooled off to a warm touch before placing them on the spinach/veggie bed.