A Hankering for Summer
*This is the first of what I hope will be many guest posts by my sister*
Anna, lovingly referred to as Gingersnap, is a self professed seed addict who loves the outdoors. While dividing her time between working, cooking, canning, crafting, gardening, 3 (mostly) broke horses and anything outdoorsy, she resides in a cabin on 160 acres of wild forest in the Great White North of British Columbia, Canada. Some may roll their eyes at living in a place with no phone or internet connection, but Anna and her fiance, Drillerman, not only make up for it, but thrive, by enjoying fishing, hunting and horseback riding. Anna traded her stilletto’s in for cowboy boots to live this life, and she doesn’t regret it one bit. While recovering from lack of ethnic and international foods available in her town, she has made the most of her freezer full of moose, home canned goat meat on the shelf, a plethora of garden treats captured via canning, and treats herself to the odd chicken breast.
I spent the weekend sorting through fishing tackle, packhorse gear, and summer clothes-turning our craft room/hunting room into a suitable spare bedroom for Sister visits. Sisters have babies, and although I don’t have kids, I’m relatively certain that a room filled with fishhooks and gunpowder isn’t a great room for an active baby to stay in.
But, to the point, spending all this time staring at all of our summer gear meant that I started to have a major hankering for ‘picnic food’. I reeeeeaaaalllly wanted potato salad. But it was snowing outside, and I just wasn’t ready to ‘go there’. Henceforth I created a warm potato salad that perfectly suited my desires.
Be warned: I didn’t write down any measurements. This salad is largely interpretive and should be altered to suit your own tastes.
Grilled Chicken & Truffled Potato Salad.
1) Quarter ~2 cups small nugget potatoes (don’t you dare peel!)
Boil in salted water until ‘fork tender’ but not mushy. Drain, set pot back on hot burner and briefly stir, to evaporate excess moisture from potatoes. Set aside.
2) In a small sauté pan, sear one boneless skinless chicken breast-cut into medium dice. I sautéed my chicken with just a hint of olive oil and enough dried sage and parsley to ‘soak up’ the moisture as it cooked. I did not want the chicken to be oily at the end, wanted it to be nicely seared and tender, but that the pan is ‘dry’ with little brown bits at the end. Throw in a spoonful of caramelized onions that you just happened to have on hand in the fridge last weekend’s canning. Remove from heat.
3) In a small mixing bowl, combine the cooked potatoes with ¼ C low-fat plain yogurt, 1 tablespoon good Dijon mustard w/horseradish, a squeeze of lemon, ½ an Avocado cut up into medium dice, a dash of Smoked Spanish Paprika and a scant tablespoon of White Truffle Butter. Toss Chicken and Caramilized onions in with potato mixture, season with White pepper & good Sea Salt. Serve warm, immediately!
4) Try not to eat the whole thing in one sitting. I failed miserably.
I LOVED this because the avocado mimics that texture of eggs, but without the work, AND a favorable taste in my opinion. Don’t worry if you don’t have white truffle butter, it’s completely optional. But if you haven’t tried white truffle butter (truffles can be intimidating) you owe it to yourself to try. YES, it is expensive, but just the smallest dab can turn a grilled steak, some roasted potatoes, etc, into a taste that is absolutely unique and addictive. The truffle butter in this recipe just gives that ‘note’ that sings throughout the whole meal.
So I ate this, staring out the windows at all the big fat snowflakes falling around me, and dreamt of fishing. Fishing with a special someone…..