Potato Salad with Arugula and Dijon Vinaigrette

By • May 31, 2011 • 33 Comments

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Author Notes: About ten years ago, I came across a recipe for a grilled potato salad in an issue of Cooks Illustrated. I was intrigued by the grilling technique, and it was the first time I'd made a potato salad with vinaigrette instead of mayonnaise, which was a revelation. The other thing I loved about the recipe was this clever technique: the just-grilled potatoes are tossed first with a little rice vinegar, which absorbs quickly into the warm potatoes, and then with a couple of handfuls of arugula, which wilts gently under their heat.

Over the years, I’ve adapted the recipe, using red wine vinegar for the vinaigrette instead of more rice vinegar, leaving out the yellow pepper, substituting red onion for the original shallot, and eventually forgoing the grill. For me, the fresh, bold flavors in the salad are the reason for its success, and I found that grilling the potatoes can distract from this. But by all means use the grill if you’d like -- just blanch the potatoes first, and then finish them on skewers on the grill for a few minutes.
Merrill Stubbs

Serves 6 to 8

  • 1/2 small red onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 pounds new potatoes, scrubbed and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • Salt
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
  • 3 cups arugula, stems removed, washed and dried and very roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 5 tablespoons good olive oil
  1. Put the onion in a small bowl and cover with cold water (this will remove some of the bite). Put the potatoes in a large pot of generously salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  2. Lower the heat so the water is barely simmering and cook for about 10 minutes, until you can pierce the potatoes with the tip of a sharp knife and it slips out easily. Drain the potatoes well and pour them into a large bowl.
  3. Gently toss the warm potatoes with the rice vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add the chives, arugula and red onion and stir through.
  4. Whisk together the red wine vinegar, mustard and olive oil in a small bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour over the potato mixture and toss to combine. Serve warm or keep covered at room temperature for up to an hour.
Jump to Comments (33)

Tags: picnic

Comments (33) Questions (1)

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6 months ago AnnaB

This dish was such a hit! It's very flavorful and impressive for dinner, but super easy to make. It's a new favorite of mine.

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6 months ago frances85221

Didn't have Arugula and made this with Purslane from the local Mexican instead. Probably the best potato salad recipe I've tried so far. Thank you Merrill!

Merrill

6 months ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

You're so welcome!

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6 months ago ErinC

Perfect potato salad to accompany grilled steak on a May evening! Thanks for the terrific recipe! Added garlic and was generous with the arugula--yumm!

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about 1 year ago amp156

This is delicious and still great the next day. Made this several times, my favorite way is to add a big handful of tarragon.

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over 1 year ago Pably Wobbly

I've made a similar batch with dandelion greens and added some fresh garlic.

Merrill

over 1 year ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

Yum!

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over 1 year ago MMD

Have you ever tried hot French Potato Salad? Great with lots of herbs, and even cold.

Merrill

over 1 year ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

Yes, one of my favorites...

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over 1 year ago mlsparks

Made this last week, and I'm already thinking of making it again tonight. It is so delicious and easy, i made a slight variation and added some cooked pancetta, as I had it leftover in the fridge and needed an excuse to use it. Excellent recipe, THANK YOU!

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over 1 year ago Judith Jones

Yummy

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over 1 year ago Ambitious

I just made this yesterday and it was delicious! I despise raw onions but this was tolerable :)

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over 2 years ago sbf-ct

Made this for July 4th family picnic (in a family of SERIOUSLY good Portuguese cooks).. it was a huge hit! Very nice fresh tasting take on potato salad! Thanks! I'm going to try it with fresh cilantro next time!

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over 2 years ago Lollypaul

Loved this recipe! After first mixing it up and tasting it, I thought it was a little bland. About 1 1/2 hours later, when serving it, it had great taste. I think the arugula (my first time using it) really added to that peppery taste. I used cider vinegar instead of the red wine vinegar because of what I had on hand. Great 4th of July side dish to BBQ ribs! I will make it again!

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over 2 years ago doodadie

I learned a recipe similar to this but it called for fresh mint and scallions instead of the arugula. Also yummy.

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over 2 years ago stitchinfox

I thought I would share with you the changes I made to this recipe...my husband is not a fan of Arugula...and I forgot the chive...so I substituted spinach for the Arugula and green onion for the red and a stalk of celery for the chive and include as much of the celery leaves as I could. Oh my goodness best Potato Salad! My last batch I added a teaspoon of Agave Nectar to the dressing....That was a great addition too. Keep these good recipes coming!

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about 3 years ago DeirdreMS

How can I make this ahead of time?

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about 3 years ago Dottie Rose

I was glad to see the addition of the rice vinegar. My mother always added vinegar to the warm, cut potatoes, but she also add a little oil. She then marinated the potatoes in the refrigerator for several hours, which increased the "zing" from the vinegar. It also means that when you add a dressing (either a vinaigrette or a mayonnaise based one), it takes less dressing to coat the potatoes and you end up with a lighter, less caloric, but very flavorful version.

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about 3 years ago Woodside

Enjoyed the addition of the arugula to a vinaigrette potato salad. I added a few capers and some chopped, oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes. Seemed to work well.

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over 3 years ago KLL5

Thank you for sharing this great recipe! It is easy and delicious. I omitted chives (forgot to buy them) and it still had plenty of zing from the vinegar and arugula. This recipe gets an A+!

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over 3 years ago phyllis

I made this for a BBQ yesterday. I prepared it in the morning, and added the arugula at the last minute. Everyone loved it. Very easy and a good addition to my collection of non-mayo potato salads. Thanks, Merrill.

Merrill

over 3 years ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

You're very welcome!

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over 3 years ago Meredith {InSockMonkeySlippers}

I can't wait to make this for the Fourth! Thanks

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over 3 years ago Meredith {InSockMonkeySlippers}

Can't wait to make this for the 4th! Thanks for the recipe!