Sorry, I’m a day late. How could it possibly be September tomorrow? how did that happen?
It was a very Calgary sort of a weekend, in a way that reminded me why I love to live here, and why I shouldn’t bother missing Vancouver as often as I do. (Until you get news that your CSA farm got its first frost on the night of August 27th. August! 27th! Bah.) Saturday morning saw an impromptu trip for coffee, cinnamon buns at Urban Baker and a trip to the park, and the sunny afternoon was spent checking out Central Memorial Park (Boxwood opens Sept 9!), the fountains and old sandstone library. Which was pretty idyllic if you ignore the fact that we were waiting for my sister to have xrays on what turned out to be a broken knee.
Saturday night I emceed the 2nd Annual Sugar Bowl to benefit the Amber Webb-Bowerman Memorial Foundation, and Sunday Pierre took a group of us to tea at Nectar before they closed their doors for good.
After tea, dinner. We tried to get the family together for Sunday dinner before September kicks in.
When there’s a roast pork loin, and fresh Taber corn, and a big fresh-from-the-garden chopped salad, and thin-skinned new potatoes still coated in dirt, and back yard (not mine)-laid eggs, and the recent discovery of how to make perfect mayo in just under two minutes, it would be a crime against the humanity of this household not to make potato salad. Especially with Rosanne Cash’s very own recipe.
I know – who needs a recipe, really? But I do like the idea that this came from Johnny Cash’s daughter’s kitchen, even though it looks just like a thousand other potato salad recipes, and that she likely at some point made it for her dad on a Sunday afternoon. My standard involves not boiling but roasting the potatoes, preferably in the drippings left from the crisply cooked bacon inevitably set aside to crumble in afterward. I love that Rosanne doesn’t bother to peel her potatoes, either. (That’s where many of the nutrients and much of the fiber are, anyway.) Hers called for plenty of chopped dill pickles; I had none, but it occurred to me that a good lob of asparagus relish from Edgar farms would do well. She uses celery; I saw her celery and raised it some roughly chopped peppery radishes. There was (refreshingly, and likely due to the abundance of pickles) no fresh dill on the list, so I used Brassica‘s grainy mustard with dill.
Also? I don’t generally have mayo in the fridge. It always goes bad before I use it. But rather than run to the store for a jar, I whisked a batch up myself. Guaranteed it took less time, and I likely saved a few dineros as well. And really-is there much better than homemade mayo? Especially when you’re dressing such perfect potatoes?
The pork loin was pretty straightforward – I loosely followed this recipe, but really just made a paste out of garlic, finely chopped rosemary and a bit of oil, rubbed it all over the meat, salted and peppered the lot and roasted it at 400ºF for about an hour. Tasty.
Rosanne Cash’s Potato Salad
adapted from Rosanne, via Bon Appétit – June 2004
Apparently Ms. Cash sometimes added two-thirds cup chopped fresh cilantro (yes, a lot) and two teaspoons curry powder to the mix.
3 lb. medium red-skinned potatoes, unpeeled, scrubbed
8 dill pickle spears, coarsely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
3 celery stalks, chopped (include the leaves!)
1 small bunch of green onions, chopped (or a small purple onion)
3 hard-boiled eggs, peeled, chopped
3/4 cup mayonnaise (or to taste
2 Tbsp. grainy Dijon mustard
Cut the potatoes in half or quarters if they need it and cook in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender. Drain and set aside to cool.
Toss everything together, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Let stand at room temperature 1 hour before serving.) Serves lots.