I’m not quite sure when or how or why, but at some point I started adding grapes to my potato salad. The classic northern European kind, with potatoes in a creamy dressing. And grapes. Go figure. But you know what? It works. It really, really works.
The grapes add a sweetness and acidity to counterbalance the creamy dressing. They add contrast to the potatoes too, both in texture and in flavour. They make the whole thing an altogether lighter affair and what’s more: you don’t get potatoes better than at this time of year.
I use mostly creme fraiche rather than mayo in this recipe. This is how I like it. Using only mayo, which some do, makes it too greasy for my liking, so I prefer to use mostly creme fraiche with a little mayo added in. Adapt the quantities to your own taste.
Otherwise, the recipe is fairly classic: simple and mild, without any strong flavours or spices. Even the onion part is mild –I use chives. If you don’t have it, shallots, spring onions or even red onion will work. Or just use another herb: parsley or dill, or a combination of the two, would both work wonderfully without overtaking the dish. Because if it is to be served among bold flavours like barbecued or cured meats, the potato (and the grapes) need to take on the supporting role. Luckily, this doesn’t at all mean boring: it is so tasty I often come back for more after finishing whatever else I’m having. On its own. Yields a large bowl, serving 6-8 depending on what else is on offer.
- 1 kg potatoes, boiled, peeled and cut into cubes
- 200 g stoneless grapes, halved
- 100 g creme fraiche
- 40 g mayonnaise
- 2 tbsp (30 g) fresh lemon juice
- 30 g chives, finely sliced, plus extra to garnish
- salt and pepper
- When the potato has reached room temperature, mix with the graps.
- Whisk creme fraiche, mayo and lemon juice in a bowl. Add chives. Season.
- Turn the potatoes carefully in the dressing until well mixed. Season with more salt, pepper or lemon juice if needed. Garnish with some extra chives, if you like.