A summertime potato salad recipe made with lightly smoked potatoes, ripe avocados and roasted jalapeno peppers. It is creamy and tangy and sure to be a hit at your next party.
Growing up, I was never a fan of potato salad. It never used to be my thing. I think it's because the typical potato salad recipe I'd encountered were goopy messes comprised of overcooked potatoes mixed with an unsubtle glop of mayo. It didn't look very good, and it sure didn't taste very good, nothing short of a bland concoction of unseasoned mayo over nearly mashed potatoes. Plus, hey, I was a kid and I was pickier back then. That's for sure.
Fast forward and I'm a fan. A BIG one. Give me a potato salad with a fun and interesting blend of ingredients and I'm in! Bring on the potato salad! Like this one. I made this while working on a Grill Time article for "Chile Pepper Magazine". The recipe appears in the June 2016 BBQ & Grilling issue. If you don't have a subscription to Chile Pepper, Subscribe to Chile Pepper Magazine Here. It's definitely worth it.
The recipe turned out so good, I had to make it again recently for a local gathering. Our visitors kept talking about how much they enjoyed it, especially the subtle smoky flavor, not too overpowering, so I'm compelled to share it here. AND! It's not JUST potatoes. We have avocado, too, my friends. One of the best foods in the universe.
You'll need to fire up your smoker for this one, which lets you hang out in your backyard awhile. Or wherever you keep your smoker. Maybe, um, crack open a beer for this?
I used a half cup of cherry wood in the smoker. You don't need more, unless you want to smoke the potatoes longer for a richer, deeper smoke flavor. Two hours is all you need at 225 degrees F, though you'll want to check them after the first 90 minutes to make sure they don't get too soft. Two hours was good for me, but leave them in as long as you need to achieve your desired results. I find that if they get TOO soft, they'll break apart too much when you mix them.
Once they're ready, it's a matter of mixing the smoked potatoes with the rest of the ingredients, so in reality, it's a simple recipe in the end. The only real cooking time is waiting for the potatoes to finish, and roasting a couple jalapeno peppers on the grill. And maybe making your own mustard, if you go that route like I did.
Please do not forget the vinegar in this potato salad recipe. One of my favorite things about this dish is the tangy pop of apple cider vinegar. That, and the spicy mustard. Any spicy mustard will do, but if you can make your own mustard with hot peppers, THAT is where you want to be.
Smoked Potato-Avocado Potato Salad - Recipe
- 1.5 pounds small yellow potatoes
- 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
- 2 jalapeno peppers, roasted and chopped
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup spicy brown mustard (I used a homemade 7-Pot IPA Mustard, but a good spicy brown will do)
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- Juice from half a lemon
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
- 2-3 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro + some for garnish
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Smoked Paprika for serving
- Get your smoker going. Wash and dry the potatoes and set them into a large baking dish. Smoke the potatoes at 225 degrees for 2 hours. You should check them after 1.5 hours by piercing them with a knife. If it goes through easily, the potatoes are done. I used a ½ cup of cherry wood for smoking these potatoes, giving them a nice, light smoky flavor.
- Remove potatoes and slice them into half inch slices. Add them to a large bowl.
- Dice the avocado and add them to the bowl.
- Slice the roasted jalapeno peppers into rings and add them to the bowl.
- To a small mixing bowl, add vinegar, mustard, mayo, lemon juice and garlic. Whisk until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into the large bowl along with cilantro. Toss everything until the potatoes-avocado are nicely coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with extra cilantro and a bit of paprika.