A little while back, I read an article highlighting Julia Child’s home in Provence and the fact that it was for sale. An interested buyer had come forth, and as I perused the photos of the home, I enviously wondered who would be the lucky person to live in that home. Fortunately, the buyer has decided to rent out the home to interested tourists, which means there’s a chance that one day, each of us might have the opportunity to stay in Julia’s beautiful, historic home. Wouldn’t that be a dream? Kind of like this French potato salad, which is a spin off of Julia Child’s and Jacques Pepin’s recipe.
I love the rustic, simple approach that the two take towards French potato salad. You don’t have to peel the potatoes, chop them into fine pieces, or use any heavy dressings. A simple drizzle of olive oil, some dijon mustard, and a good grind of sea salt and freshly ground pepper is all you need. You get tons of flavor from some quickly sautéed scallions, garlic, and red onions. I left out the white wine she uses because I prefer the flavor without it, and I incorporated some of the freshness of Spring by swapping out green beans in favor of roasted asparagus.
To turn this French potato salad into a meal rather than just a side, I added some hardboiled eggs. I thought it to be a very French thing to do, plus don’t eggs and potatoes just go so well together? I can’t tell you how tasty this French potato salad is. It’s fresh, yet hearty and warm, and it’s positively addictive. Since I’m a big fan of goat cheese, I crumbled some on top while the salad was still warm, which only made the cheese creamier and more sensational. Whether you make this as a side or main dish, it’s sure to be a favorite among your family and friends.
- 1.25 lbs baby potatoes
- 1/2 lb. asparagus stalks
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts
- 1/4 red onion, sliced thinly
- 1/8 cup + 2 tbsp olive oil, separated
- 2 1/2 tsp dijon mustard, or to taste
- 1 tbsp chopped basil, chives, and/or tarragon
- 2 radiches, sliced thinly
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 2 eggs, hardboiled
- 1 oz. goat cheese, crumbled (optional)
- Wash potatoes before placing them in a quart-size saucepan. Fill the pan with enough water to cover the potatoes and reach about 1/2" higher than the potatoes. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to medium-low. Cook until they're fork-tender.
- Meanwhile, rinse your asparagus and pat dry. Trasnfer to a foil-lined baking sheet, then drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil all over the asparagus. Sprinkle the asparagus with some sea salt. Broil for approximately 3-5 minutes, until they're tender. Remove from the oven and temporarily set aside.
- In a small saucepan, warm 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the minced garlic, scallions, and red onion, and sauté for about 1 minute (just to get the veggies warm and cook the garlic).
- Once the potatoes are cooked, slice them in half. If they're on the larger side, you can cut them into quarters. Place the potatoes in a large bowl.
- To the bowl, add the sautéed veggies, roasted asparagus, and chopped basil. Drizzle the 1/8 cup of olive oil (or more if you desire) over the potatoes and veggies. Add the dijon mustard, along with salt and pepper. Gently toss the ingredients together to combine everything and mix the mustard in well.
- Plate the salad, then garnish with sliced radiches and the hardboiled eggs (which you can slice in half and add a pinch of salt to as well).