Grilling season is upon us and while I enjoy just about anything that comes off the grill, what I really love are the side dishes. Growing up I was partial to baked beans and had even been known to forgo my meal for a plate full of baked beans (I have distinct memories of this… on more than one occasion!). Had I known about this Pesto Potato Salad back then things might have been a little different. Keeping with the traditional classic ingredients (i.e.-bacon!) this potato salad is far healthier than the mayo clad version and packs a lot more flavor. The combination of the potato and egg is deliciously creamy and the addition of crispy bacon pretty much completes the dish. Then, tossed together with a zesty pesto and topped with pan fried capers and you have the most delicious potato salad!
I like to make my own pesto and freeze it in individual bags so when I’m ready to use some I can just pull it out of the freezer. This particular pesto was made with basil and beet greens but you can use your favorite pre-made pesto or a traditional basil/pine nut version.
Pesto Potato Salad:
– 2 lb multi-colored petite potatoes, fingerling or wax potatoes
– 1/2 cup pesto
– 3 hard boiled eggs, quartered
– 2 pieces of bacon
– 2 tablespoons capers, drained
– 1/2 tablespoon salt + more to taste
– 1 teaspoon pepper + more to taste
– Hard boil the eggs: place them in a sauce pan and cover with water. Bring to a boil then turn off the heat and cover, let cook for 10 minutes then drain and put the eggs in an ice bath. Once cool, peel the shell and quarter.
– Halve or quarter the potatoes so they are all roughly the same size. Place in a sauce pan and cover with water. Add a generous pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Let cook for 10-15 minutes, until fork tender. Mix half the pesto into the potatoes and then let cool. You want to do this while the potatoes are warm, they will soak up a lot of flavor!
– Cut bacon into small 1/4 inch pieces, fry- reserve bacon fat to cook the capers. Let them cook in the bacon fat for 5-7 minutes, remove from pan onto a paper towel to absorb excess oil.
– Add the eggs and bacon to the cooled potatoes, add the remainder of the pesto. Season to taste and top with the crispy capers.
Serve cold or at room temperature!