warm potato salad with smoked mackerel
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Potato salad with gherkins, radishes or something similarly crunchy, lots of dill, a wisp of spring onion and a sensibly generous amount of good quality mayo – ahhh. I’m writing this before lunch and can only be grateful I’m sitting here on my own so no one can hear the loud, embarrassing growl coming from my stomach. Potato salad is one of my forbidden luxuries.
To be honest, my mother did her best to put me off it when I was a kid. Her version inexplicably featured diced cooked carrots and – horror of horrors – peas from a tin. Why? Search me; she probably thought she was smuggling hateful veg in a dish I liked, so I’d not notice. More fool her. I would meticulously pick out all the single green and orange objects and leave them festooning the rim of my plate.
But why a forbidden luxury – why of course, carbs, fattening, spuds and I have a love/hate relationship. It is so unfair that my fave food isn’t kale.
This dish is the best of all possible worlds: not only a potato salad but ROASTED potatoes, and that’s one better. It’s served warm so various individuals averse to cold potatoes may not complain. It’s got the added goodness, omega-3-ishness and inexpensiveness of smoked mackerel – which makes it a complete meal. Can you beat that?
Yes. Just boiled diced spuds with mayo. But I’ll shut up about it.
- 4-5 medium potatoes (Duke of York, Desiree or similar)
- 4 tbsp. melted butter
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tsp ground sumac (optional)
- 1 tsp togaraschi or gochugaru (or mild chili powder)
- 3 sprigs of rosemary, leaves stripped and finely chopped
- ½ small bunch of dill, chopped
- salt and black pepper
- 1 large smoked mackerel
- ½ red bell pepper
- ½ green bell pepper
- 1 small cucumber
- ½ head of romaine or cos lettuce
- 2-3 pickled gherkins, sliced
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6. Wash and scrub the potatoes leaving skin unpeeled. Slice them quite thinly, about 4mm (¼ in.). Toss the slices with the butter, oil, and the spices and herbs in a large ovenproof dish; liberally season with salt and pepper. Roast for 40 minutes, stirring them around once or twice to crisp evenly.
In the meantime take the skin off the mackerel, remove the central bone and try to remove as many pin bones from the sides of the fillets as you can. Break the fish into chunks.
Dice the cucumber, the red and green pepper. Roughly shred the lettuce.
When the potatoes are tender, browned and crisp on top remove the dish from the oven and toss in the diced peppers, cucumber, gherkins and the shredded lettuce. Gently stir in the mackerel pieces and serve immediately.