What is the hallmark of festive Russian gatherings?
They always include a lineup of chopped salads! I can think of 10 varieties just off the top of my head!
Each salad starts with some combination of potatoes, onions, and carrots. Whatever the base, it then gets different companions — like beets, herring, ham, apples, prunes, walnuts, cheese, or garlic. And finally, no matter what, everything is drenched in mayo or sour cream.
This recipe emerged from my weekly habit of making chicken stock. I buy a chicken from a local Amish store, and then use it whole (not just the bones) for stock. As a result, the leftover meat I use in soups and salads — including this dish!
While the ingredient combination may seem a bit odd to you (Pickles and dairy together?), believe me, it works beautifully!
Not to mention, the practice of using such ingredients goes back many centuries. In Russia, this recipe is similar to both okroshka and olivye.
What are these dishes? Okroshka is a soup made from fresh and fermented veggies and herbs in a liquid of bread kvass, whey, or fermented milk.
On the other hand, while okroshka incorporates fermented liquids to form a soup, olivye leaves out these ingredients in favor of a (less liquid-y) salad. However, it is made with similar veggies. And of course, plenty of mayo, too!
I’ve combined these concepts to make this probiotic potato salad. Make it a meal of its own, or serve it with a cup of soup and crusty bread!
It’s even perfect baby food. Just remember — chop everything finely and then omit the horseradish and pepper. My now 14-month-old started eating it when he was 10 months old.
- 3 medium golden potatoes, boiled with skins and chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 2 medium pickles, chopped
- 3 eggs, hard-boiled and chopped
- 1 apple, shredded with a large grater
- 2 cooked chicken breasts (or equivalent amount of dark meat), chopped
- 1 cup lacto-fermented or cooked peas
- handful of fresh dill, chopped finely
- 3 to 4 sprigs fresh parsley, chopped finely
- 4 to 5 green onions, chopped OR ½ small sweet onion
- salt and pepper, each to taste
- Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl.
- Then, in a small bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients well.
- Toss the dressing with the salad.
- Leave for a couple of hours, or overnight, for flavors to develop.
- Finally, serve and enjoy!
- Keep in an air-tight container for up to 3 days.
Have you ever made a probiotic potato salad? Do you enjoy Russian cuisine?
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