Warm New Potato Salad Recipe from Sean Corcoran of The Peekskill Brewery

New potatoes charm menus with their sweetness.

You know those small, round, new potatoes we get in the supermarket year-round? They may be small, round, and always accessible, but they’re certainly not new. No, true new potatoes are only available now, fresh from the earth, the immature fruit of the potato plant—any and all varieties. Those supermarket imposters are fully mature spuds that just happened to grow on the small side; the botanical equivalent of the runt of the litter.

Our greenmarkets are beginning to offer the real thing: infant baubles swaddled in papery skins, singularly sweet since their sugar hasn’t yet converted to starch. Their waxy texture makes them ideal for salads, or my favorite: steamed (no peeling required), then slathered with butter and herbs. Heaven. (And, if those herbs are specifically dill: paradise.)

Chef Sean Corcoran knows these blessings well. At The Peekskill Brewery (55 Hudson Ave, Peekskill 914-734-2337; thepeekskillbrewery.com), new potatoes grace his menu in many guises. “They’re sweet and buttery, and hold their shape so you can eat them cold,” he says. Exhibit A: a salad of the blanched orbs, halved and crisped in hot oil, then tossed with crème fraîche, roasted garlic, lemon, and herbs. “Their crispness lends a nice textural counterpoint,” he says of the dish, which he serves alongside a grilled fennel- and coriander-dusted skirt steak. A roast chicken might partner his “Cracked New Potatoes.” The spuds are first crushed, crisped in oil, then tossed with Parmesan, sea salt, and parsley. And then there’s his baked new potato gratin, lush with béchamel and grated cheddar.
“They’re simple dishes that showcase the potato,” Corcoran says. Yes, simple, tender, and well worth the wait—just like their season.

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Warm New Potato, Morel, and Ramp Salad     

Courtesy of Sean Corcoran, The Peekskill Brewery
(Serves 5)

1 lb new potatoes, rinsed

8 oz ramps (roughly chopped scallions, garlic scapes, or leeks may be substituted), trimmed, rinsed, and dried

8 oz morel mushrooms, halved lengthwise, lightly rinsed, and dried ¼ cup sherry vinegar, preferably aged ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil

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Pinch of red-pepper flakes

4 cups arugula, rinsed and dried

1 Tbsp each chopped chives, chervil, and parsley (or other soft herb)                                                                                                      Squeeze of lemon

Sea salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste

In medium pot, simmer potatoes in salted water until fork tender. Drain and let cool. In medium sauté pan, heat enough olive oil to coat bottom of pan, then cook ramps and morels, with salt and pepper, until ramps are just wilted and starting to turn golden.

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In small bowl, whisk together vinegar and olive oil. Add pinch each of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Halve cooled potatoes, then combine with morels and ramps in separate large bowl. Add chopped herbs and toss to combine. Add enough vinaigrette to suit your taste and toss to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper. In another bowl, toss arugula with remaining vinaigrette. Divide potato mixture among five plates, and top with arugula. Finish with a drizzle of lemon juice, olive oil, and pinch of sea salt.

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