Peruvian-Style Potato Salad
My husband and I’s wedding vows were pretty traditional. Variations on the stuff about sickness and health, richer and poorer, faithfulness ’til death do we part. What they really should have included is a clause about taking out each other’s contact lenses when habañero peppers have been touched that day (otherwise, mind-numbing ocular pain ensues). Because that’s about as intimate as you can get to another human being, yes? Literally sticking your fingers onto somebody elses’ eyeball to grab their contact.
Obviously, this Peruvian-Style Potato Salad involves habañero peppers! This is my take on Papa a la Huancaína, a Peruvian dish of boiled yellow potatoes topped with a creamy and cheesy habañero-infused sauce. It’s a dish that isn’t necessarily HOT or even spicy, but you could say it has a pleasant “warmness” to it. If you’re new to cooking with habañeros, this is the perfect dish to ease you into it!
Here, I’ve boiled a few flavorful Idaho® yellow potatoes to start with. While those were cooking, I whipped up a quick no-cook sauce by blending together queso fresco (a mild Mexican cheese), garlic, evaporated milk, olive oil, lime juice and half of a habañero pepper. The potatoes are then peeled, sliced and arranged on a serving platter lined with greens. The sauce is drizzled over, and the dish is garnished with black olives, sliced hard boiled eggs and chives. Alternatively, the potatoes, olives and eggs could be chopped smaller and tossed together with the sauce and chives, as in a traditional American potato salad.
If you’re looking to shake things up this summer and try a different kind of potato salad, you might want to give this a try. But if you’re a contact lens wearer, just wear rubber gloves, or prepare to discover the true meaning of closeness with your spouse.
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Peruvian-Style Potato Salad
This post is sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission. All opinions are my own. Sponsored posts help me pay for the costs associated with this blog (groceries…lots of groceries), and help support me as I pursue a career in recipe development and food photography.
These sound really good, thanks for putting this up.
You and I channeled the same muse this week with our deconstructed spud salad! Love yours! In fact, I have a recipe for the same dish, taught by a Spanish-speaking cook: http://www.shockinglydelicious.com/papa-a-la-huancaina-peruvian-potato-salad/. So fun!
Yes, papa a la huancaina is so good! Sometimes I like to take all of the ingredients and just stir them all up, like a regular potato salad, too 🙂
Oh my gosh…lucky you for having someone to help with the contacts. I was making chili with a bunch of poblano peppers a few months ago…I washed my hands about 20 times afterward, cleaned under my nails, etc…but there was somehow still some remnants of heat. I way laying in bed with my eyes watering like a faucet for what seemed like forever. I use spicy peppers all the time too…d’oh!
Sounds like you and I need to split a box of rubber gloves, Katie!
To be honest, I was a little surprised myself. I got it all plated it, and thought “wow, this really looks nice!” I wasn’t expecting it, just because it’s so….yellow and beige, you know?
Whoever dreamed a potato salad could be elegant?
Is it wrong I want to eat the eggs and olives first, and then dig into the potatoes? So many favorites in this potato salad! Gorgeous!
Haha, not wrong at all, Karen! You’re welcome to dig in however you want 🙂
I love how different this salad is and the ingredients that go in it – luckily I wear glasses 🙂 Last month when I was on vacation in FL I met Isabel at a blogging seminar and she talked about how Sunday Supper got started. Love seeing your recipes Lori!
So glad you had a chance to meet Isabel, Deb. You know we’d love to have you for #SundaySupper anytime you’d like to join 🙂
This looks absolutely awesome – such a great spin on a traditional dish!
I love Peruvian food, what a great twist on potato salad!
Thanks Shaina! I honestly haven’t had too much other Peruvian food, but I’d love to try more.
This is such a creative recipe…and I love all the colors and flavors you have going on here. Just beautiful!
Thanks so much, Alida!
Hahahaah that contact story sounds like something with me and my future husband someday. Never heard of Peruvian potato salad, so I’m intrigued by this.
Haha thanks, Carla. Make sure you interview all possible husband candidates with “Would you be willing to stick your finger in my eye, if you needed to?”
Lori, this potato salad sounds wonderful. We were in Peru earlier this year (Lima) and got to try some wonderful Peruvian food. This sounds like it will be up there with what we got to eat. (If you haven’t had Peruvian ceviche, you need to try it – it’s the best.) You make me glad that I don’t wear contacts! I’ve had enough problems with touching my area after chopping up jalapeños…
Oh, I would love to visit Peru, Susan! How is Peruvian ceviche different from other types? I’m intrigued, because I love a good ceviche.
Oops! Now I am thoroughly embarrassed, because I can’t tell you why. I can tell you that what we had mixed the fish with lime, red onion, red chile and cilantro (based on the photos I took during the cooking demonstration). The flavor of it was very rich. Maybe I’m comparing it to the ceviche they make on the cruise ship which just isn’t that good. At any rate, if you get to Lima, the Minka market in Callao (the port city) is a must visit. They have the cleanest, best smelling fish market and the most gorgeous produce I’ve ever seen – and I’ve been to markets in a lot of places. You have to go through the mall part to get to the good part; definitely worth a visit. I guess I’ll have to do some research on ceviche recipes?… 🙂
Oh, no need to be embarrassed at all, Susan! I don’t know a ton about ceviche – I’ve only made it a few times, just using a recipe one of my culinary instructors gave me. Not sure what country that version originated from, though!
That Minka market sounds amazing! I hope to get there one day, for sure.
Ouch! Sorry about your burning eyeball but this dish looks worth the pain! 🙂 Nice presentation!
Hopefully your eyes are okay. This dish looks delicious!!!
Oh yeah, I lived to tell the tale. Thank goodness for disposable contacts!
I don’t wear contacts so I’m good to go! these layers look so pretty!
This is absolutely gorgeous! I love how everything is sliced and layered. Such a pretty effect.
Thanks so much, Heather!
Lori – this sounds like one amazing potato salad. Oh my I cannot even imagine how painful habanero pepper laced contacts must be…
Haha, luckily I lived to tell the tale, Bea!
Thanks goodness I don’t wear contacts ;). But man, oh man, do I want to snatch that plate and be alone with it. Sounds amazing!
“I think we’re alone now. There doesn’t seem to be anyone around.”
Just you and spuddy buddy.
I absolutely love this!!! Boiled yellow potatoes topped with a creamy and cheesy habañero-infused sauce and hard boiled eggs?! love this and can’t wait to try this!
Thanks Alice! You know what it would be good with? MORE FLANK STEAK SLIDERS. Because it’s never a bad time for chimichurri. And that makes it sort of a South American theme, right?
Gorgeous, Lori! (Pinned and G+!) So glad I’ve now got the how-to on a very gourmet Peruvian potato salad =)
So glad I have a how-to on a delicious Asian Potato Salad too, Kim! We traded!
This potato salad looks fantastic. Love the addiition of olives
Thanks so much, Isabel!
Looks so yumm!
Mmmmm….this looks so elegant. What a delicious potato salad!
How original and creative…love the addition of habanero!
I was going to say, don’t you wear gloves when you chop hot peppers? I’ve learned that lesson and I even stopped wearing contacts! Oh the pain! the pain! Even so, this looks worth it.
Haha yeah, I don’t know WHY I don’t have a box of gloves. It’s just one of those things you never remember you need to buy …until you really need it.
What a great spin to potato salad! It looks incredible and the photos are beautiful!
Thanks so much, Jen. I was super pleasantly surprised with how these photos turned out. The sunlight that day was just right!
I see my name written on that plate of potato salad. I know it. It is calling out to me. Yum, yum, YUM!
It’s weird, that plate DOES have an etching of “Renee” under all those potatoes 😉