BLT Smashed Potato Salad
Smashed potato salads
Smashed potato salads are my new thing. It started with cooking up some smashed potatoes on the grill, and then I got to thinking these amazing, garlicky, crispy-but-tender, smashed potatoes would be a great starting point for a salad. So I began experimenting by layering smashed potatoes, a little protein, lettuce, vegetables and maybe a sprinkling of cheese, and was really wowed with the results.
Delicious, economical one-dish meals with all kinds of possibilities
The smashed potato salad concept makes terrific one-dish meals. And there are so many ways to make them. Start with this BLT smashed potato salad, or try my Crazy-good smashed potato salad with layers of sauteed onions, chorizo, roasted bell peppers, tomato, lettuce and manchego cheese. Or come up with your own version - maybe a taco smashed potato salad, or a chicken caesar smashed potato salad, or a Greek smashed potato salad, or maybe just hunt around and use what is in your fridge. Smashed potatoes are such a great starting point for a salad. You can't go wrong.
You can use a variety of potatoes for this salad. Miniature waxy potatoes are best. Look for Yukon gold, red or blue potatoes that are 1 1/2" to 2 1/2" in diameter. Or you can use sweet potatoes or a combination of sweet potatoes and waxy potatoes. If you plan to use sweet potatoes, buy long skinny ones that are about 2" in diameter and slice them about 1 1/2" thick.
Smashing the potatoes
Smashing the potatoes is fun. Just don't get too carried away and over smash them. Put the cooked potatoes on a clean dish towel, cover with more dish towel and use the heel of your hand to smash down on the potatoes until they are about 1/2" thick. You will feel the potato give way as you press down. The goal is for the potato to stay roughly intact, but if you lose a few bits don't worry about it. Go ahead and grill the bits too.
Grill or roast
I prefer to grill the potatoes, but you can also roast them in a hot 450 degree oven for about 20 to 25 minutes. If you grill them you will need a grill pan like this one.
A word on potatoes
Potatoes get a bad rap for their high-glycemic load. There is a lot of great nutrition in a potato, and there are several tricks to reducing their glycemic load. This recipe uses all the tricks. See my post on 10 ways to reduce potato's glycemic load for smart tricks that make potatoes not only healthier, but more delicious.
About the bacon
You can cook the bacon on the stove, or use Sue's company bacon recipe to cook the bacon in the oven. Sue sprinkles her bacon with a touch of brown sugar. Bacon tastes great this way, but you can also cook bacon in the oven without the added sugar. Oven-cooked bacon is so much easier and less messy. In fact, I never cook bacon on the stove anymore.
BLT smashed potato salad
Yield 4 servings
Grilled smashed potatoes are the underpinnings of this one-dish meal. Layer bacon, lettuce, tomato, avocado and crumbled blue cheese and finish with a squeeze of lime.
- 1.5 pounds miniature waxy potatoes, such as yukon gold, scrubbed
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 T grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 head of romaine lettuce, chopped
- 6-8 strips of crisp cooked bacon
- 1/2 pound cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1/2 avocado, diced
- 2 T red onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 1 lime, sliced in 8 wedges
- Fill a pot with water and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes, return to a boil and reduce heat to medium. Cook for 10-15 minutes, until potatoes are just fork-tender. Remove the pan from the heat and drain potatoes in a colander. Set aside until they have cooled.
- Heat the grill to medium high. To smash the potatoes lay a clean kitchen towel, preferably a flour-sack towel on the counter. Place the potatoes on half of the kitchen towel and fold the other half of the towel over the potatoes. Using the heel of your hand, press down on each potato until it is 1/2" thick. The potato will easily yield to the pressure so be careful not to over smash them.
- Put a grill pan on top of a baking sheet. (The baking sheet is to catch the oil drips.) Put the garlic and olive oil in a small bowl. Dip each potato into the oil and place on the grill pan. Scoop up any residual garlic and disperse over the smashed potatoes. Season liberally with salt and pepper.
- Place the grill pan on the grill and cook for 6 to 8 minutes on each side. When you turn the potatoes, season with more salt and pepper.
- While hot, arrange smashed potatoes on a large platter. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Scatter the lettuce around the perimeter of the platter. Layer the bacon, tomatoes, avocado, red onion and blue cheese on top of the smashed potatoes. Garnish the platter with lime squeezes.
THIS SERVES WELL WITH