Potato salad is a mainstay of picnics, but keeping a mayonnaise-based dish chilled during the heat of summer can be a challenge. Greek potato salad, with a base of olive oil and lemon juice, is refreshingly light. It can sit out with the other picnic fare with no risk of spoiling and fits in just as nicely with ‘burgers and ‘dogs as it does with barbecue chicken or lamb roasted on a spit.
The Ladolemono is a classic Greek dressing added to a variety of dishes, including poached, grilled, or fried fish, raw and cooked vegetables, and salads. Purists whisk 2 parts olive oil to 1 part lemon juice. However, the more typical Greek method is to slowly pour the oil and lemon in a circular pattern over the intended dish, estimating the amounts of each.
Health Benefits of Greek Cooking
This potato salad includes ingredients used regularly in Greek cooking. Because of the abundance of olive trees, olive oil is the predominant oil of Greek cuisine. More commonly known for its ability to lower the risk of heart disease, olive oil is rich in antioxidants and may also protect against breast cancer. It helps the digestive system and protects the immune system.
Used often in Greek cooking, lemons have a number of health benefits. In this dish, the lemon acts as a preservative, adds a dose of Vitamin C, and aids digestion. In terms of taste, it balances the heartiness of the olive oil, resulting in the fresh, rich flavor of the Ladolemono.
The other two main ingredients in the potato salad, fresh parsley and onions, both have health benefits. High in Vitamin C, parsley settles the stomach, helps fight cancer, acts as a diuretic, and freshens the breath. High in antioxidants, onions also help fight cancer and may raise good cholesterol.
The amounts of the ingredients listed below can, and should be, adjusted to accommodate personal taste. A typical Greek cook will eyeball the amounts, adding a fistful of onions and another splash of lemon juice.
Greek Potato Salad Recipe
- 2 pounds red potatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- salt and pepper
How to Make it
Scrub the potatoes. Cover with cold water, and cook until tender but firm. Cool until potatoes can be handled and slice into bite-sized pieces. Peeling the potatoes is optional. (Potato peel is full of nutrients, so think twice before peeling the potatoes!)
While the potatoes are still warm, toss gently with the Ladolemono, using a wooden spoon.
Add the green onion and parsley.
Season to taste with salt and pepper. The potatoes will absorb a lot of salt, so add it liberally to bring out the other flavors.
Cover and refrigerate at least several hours before serving to allow flavors to blend.