Thursday, May 12, 2016

Pickled Jalapeno Avocado Potato Salad

What do you serve with Mexican or Southwestern main dishes? Refried beans? Rice? Green salad? Or maybe something a little unexpected?

Now that warmer weather is here...for the moment again, anyway...I decided to accompany black bean tostadas with something just a bit more summery. Not potato salad, not even guacamole, but a fresh take on the old salad standby that's kind of a mashup of both. With a big kick of heat!

The idea came about by accident when I'd tried a batch of jalapeno pickled eggs. The results were okay, but not what I was looking for exactly. I had this big jar of pickled jalapenos and onions leftover that I couldn't bear to just toss in the disposal. So I got busy and came up with this spicy twist on a standard.

Just a bit of advice. Taste your pickled jalapenos before you decide what quantity to use in the potato salad. Some brands are hotter than others. I've found the Old El Paso brand is comparatively mild (to my heat loving tastebuds, anyway), so I used the full cup. If you like more cilantro, use more...if you don't like it at all, leave it out. Like it tarter? Use more pickling liquid or more lime juice. Let your own taste and preference be your guide.

You know, I'm pretty sure I won't be saving this just for a TexMex meal. The heat of the jalapenos, soft creaminess of the avocado, the zing of lime and the crunch of celery all work together for one especially crave-able summer salad. It's too good NOT to have it a lot more often than that!

The inspiration.

Pickled Jalapeno Avocado Potato Salad

  • 2 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, cooked, cooled slightly, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 C celery, diced
  • 2 hardboiled eggs, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 C - 1 C pickled jalapenos, drained and sliced across - reserve liquid (the amount of pickled jalapenos you use depends on how spicy you like things and how hot the peppers are. Some pickled jalapenos are hotter than others.)
  • 1/4 - 1/3 C minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 C onion, finely minced
  • 2 avocados, 1 very ripe, the 2nd not quite so ripe. The very soft one will be used in the dressing, the other diced for the salad.
  • juice of 1 lime (2 T approx)
  • 1/2 C mayonnaise
  • 1/4 C reserved pickled jalapeno liquid
  • 1 T Jane's Crazy Salt

In a large bowl, mix potatoes, celery, eggs, jalapenos, cilantro, onion, and the diced avocado. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mash the soft avocado with a fork and add mayo, pickled jalapeno liquid, lime juice and Crazy Salt. Mix well and pour over the potato mixture. Mix gently, but thoroughly.

Chill until serving time.