Upgrade Boring Potato Salad With This Crispy Technique

Smashed potato salad with herbs
Smashed potato salad with herbs - Jamie Vespa MS, RD/Instagram

Each year, everybody makes a big deal about grilling season when it comes around, and when the weather gets warm, the sides are just as important as the meats. After all, what's a plate of barbecued ribs or slices of steak without a big blob of seasoned spuds? A good potato salad recipe is a near-perfect dish, but that doesn't mean there's no room for innovation. One thing a lot of salad recipes lack is a little texture, which is easy to fix — just use smashed potatoes.

Crispy smashed potatoes have been showing up on a lot of menus and dinner tables in the past few years, and for good reason. They're crunchy and toasty on the outside and soft on the inside, the perfect textural juxtaposition. When you use them in a potato salad, you'll get all that flavor and crunch, plus fresh herbs and tangy dressing. It doesn't require any special equipment to make, and you were already going to boil the potatoes anyway, so all you have to do is squish and roast your taters.

Read more: 12 Vegetables And Fruits That Used To Look Very Different

Using Smashed Potatoes In A Salad

A pan of crispy smashed potatoes
A pan of crispy smashed potatoes - Iko636/Getty Images

Smashed potato salad isn't made much differently than regular potato salad, except when it comes to cooking the potatoes. You can make almost any potato salad recipe into a smashed potato version. All you need to do is boil any small, waxy potato variety like Yukon Gold, Red Bliss, and Fingerling until they are tender (but not falling apart), drain and rinse them, and then smash them with the back of a big spoon or a drinking glass (a lemon juicer also works great if you own one). Then, baste the potatoes with olive oil or melted butter, season them with herbs and spices, and bake them until they're crispy.

If you want to do all your cooking outdoors, you can even skip the boiling step and roast the whole potatoes on a flat pan on the grill before smashing them. Once they get soft, smash 'em up and roast them. Just keep the lid of the grill closed so that the potatoes stay hot and get nice and brown on the edges. Once your smashed potatoes are nice and crispy, let them cool, then mix them into any of your favorite potato salad recipes.

Serve Your Salad The Same Day You Make It

Bowls of different kinds of potato salad
Bowls of different kinds of potato salad - Bit245/Getty Images

The one significant difference between traditional and smashed potato salad is timing. The crispiness of smashed potatoes is fleeting once you mix it with a wet vinaigrette or creamy dressing, so make sure to serve it the same day as you make it or keep the ingredients separate until it's time to eat. This is a bit of a departure for potato salad, as it's nice to make a big batch the night before and let the flavors meld in the fridge overnight. However, if you're worried about flavor, add some extra herbs, a little more vinegar, and Dijon mustard. If you like that crunchy texture, add a couple of slices of crispy chopped bacon to the mix.

Another thing to keep in mind is that roasted potatoes are drier than what you might be used to for potato salad making, so it's not a bad idea to make a little extra dressing so that the finished salad doesn't come out too dry. Just increase the wet dressing ingredients in your recipe by a tablespoon or so, and you should have plenty of moisture and flavor to achieve the perfect smashed potato salad.

Read the original article on Daily Meal