Food & Entertaining - Garden to Table

Salads for a crowd

New flavour twists infuse classic standby salads to liven up the crowd at this year’s backyard bashes

'Tis the season for outdoor entertaining and, guess what, you're on salad duty again. This year, ditch the boring old standbys and give your Aunt Edna's homemade lasagna or even your husband's infamous burgers a run for their money with these updated takes on classic potluck favourites. When it comes to feeding a crowd, there's nothing like a crisp salad of seasonal ingredients and bright, bold flavours to give any pool party, barnyard barbecue or picnic in the pasture a colourful lift, and with no-fail recipes like these ones featuring fresh tastes, crunchy textures and bright, summery hues, your simple side is sure to outshine any meaty main it shares a paper plate with.

Baby potato salad with smoky mustard (shown above)
Serves 6 to 8

1 lb baby red potatoes
1 lb blue potatoes
1 lb baby Yukon potatoes
1 tbsp kosher salt
⅓ cup white wine vinega

¼ cup olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
½ cup sour cream
1 tbsp grainy mustard
3 tbsp smoky mustard (Kozlik’s is a popular Canadian brand)
1 cup sliced celery
3 green onions, thinly sliced white and green parts
2 tbsp chopped chives


Leaving the skin on potatoes, cut them all in half or into one-and-a-half-inch cubes. Place cut potatoes in a large pot, add kosher salt and fill pot with enough cold water to cover potatoes by two inches. Bring water to a boil, reduce heat slightly and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes, or until potatoes are easily pierced with a knife.

Drain the potatoes in a colander and let them steam dry for 2 or 3 minutes. While the potatoes are still hot, place them in a large bowl and drizzle with the white wine vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow mixture to cool for half an hour, stirring gently every now and again to evenly coat the potatoes.

Gently stir sour cream and mustards into potato mixture, tossing to thoroughly coat. Add in the celery and green onions; stir to coat. Ga­rnish with the chopped chives.

Refrigerate and serve cold.

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