Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Poblano Pesto Potato Salad

Well, I made another potato salad. It seems to be my new thing. I love a potato salad, or at least I love them as long as they don't contain mayo. I don't do mayo. But fortunately for me, there are still plenty of creative things one can do with potatoes.

I had a couple of leftover poblano peppers to use up, and I thought I was being very clever when I decided that they would taste fabulous as a pesto sauce. However, it turns out that I was not the first person to think of this. A quick Google search revealed that another blogger had made a sauce just like the one I thought I had dreamed up. Using their basic recipe as a guide, I made my own with a couple of different ingredients, such as fresh cilantro and marcona almonds. I especially love the marcona almonds in there; they have such a nice flavor, and they're already roasted and salted. That means I can use less oil and salt in the pesto; score!

I divided the batch of pesto in half, and used one half to make a simple potato salad. It was delicious! Just the thing for July 4th. The other half is awaiting its use in my fridge; I'm thinking about just using it as a pasta sauce. It's very scrumptious; it would be good as a sauce for meat or shrimp, as well. Heck, you could even use it to top your tacos or fajitas; the poblanos and cilantro give it a Mexican kinda flair.

Poblano Pesto
adapted from The Food Medic
makes about 1 1/2 cups pesto

2 large poblano peppers, blackened over an open flame or under the broiler, with the skin, seeds, and stems removed
1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves (you can include stems)
1/2 cup marcona almonds
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lemon, juiced
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. In a food processor, combine the almonds and garlic. Pulse until the almonds have been finely chopped. Add the poblanos, the cilantro, and the lemon juice. Process until the greens have been blended and the mixture resembles a coarse sauce. Slowly stream in the olive oil while the processor is running, then scrape down the sides of the bowl. Sprinkle in salt and pepper, to taste, and then pulse the food processor again until the mixture is uniform.

2. To make Poblano Pesto Potato Salad, simply mix half the pesto sauce with 1 lb. to 1 1/2 lbs. small Yukon gold potatoes that have been quartered and cooked in simmering water until fork tender (about 12 minutes). Store in the fridge until chilled, then serve. The other half of the pesto sauce can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for at least a week.


  1. This pesto looks delicious. Do you think you could make it with dried poblanos that were re-hydrated? I have quite a few of those lying around!

  2. Katie - I suppose you could, yeah! You might wanna use more than 2 though. Even rehydrated polanos are probably going to be a lot smaller than the 2 huge ones I used! Definitely give it a shot though; it was so delicious!