A Potato Salad to Love — Une salade de pommes de terre si tentante

Sunday Lunch:
Three Vegetable Tartlets — Arugula — Mint Potato, Pea and Bresaola Salad

I think that you might have a story just like mine. And perhaps you might also have the same love for fingerling potatoes. And oh, by the way, this is not un poisson d’avril — April’s Fool. Really.

I actually did not plan to make us lunch at home on Sunday because in reality, we were supposed to go out for the entire day. We had a lovely plan: a walk by the beach in Rhode Island, and tea with friends on the way back. The weather forecast was more than promising: sunny with clear blue sky, and not freezing temperatures either. The perfect day, we shall call it, non ? But things did not turn out the way we expected. When I woke up early on Sunday morning, I noticed something odd. As I was still lying in the dark bedroom, with the sheets pulled up to my neck, I noticed how cold my nose was. Really unusually cold. I reluctantly dragged myself out of our toasty bed and walked quietly downstairs to turn the heat up. 53 F? That’s not right! And then I remembered the work done on the heating system just a few days before. And then an unpleasant idea crossed my mind. Could this &%$#^#! heating system be broken again after having been just tuned up?

It was. Kaput ! Our plans for the day would obviously need to change. It was cold inside, enough to make my fingers feel numb and my nose stay pitch red all morning!

Do these scenarios happen to you on Sundays as well? Nous ? Always, alors vraiment toujours. I have really noticed that whenever we have a problem with the plumbing or the heating system, it always happens on weekends. Comme par hasard. Once, we found ourselves with an inch of water in the kitchen when the dishwasher broke, just a day before leaving for France; another time, it was one pipe that burst leaving me without water for the Saturday dinner I was preparing for friends. I know well, there are worse things that can happen. But when these happen, no matter how I try to reason myself, for a second, or two, it is a real pain. La poisse ! (French slang for bad luck)

Le gars de chez Thermoil vient aujourd’hui ?” (The guy from Thermoil is coming today?) I asked P. in a bit of a panic at the thought of hanging out all day in a feels-like-a-freezer house . Even the sun outside would have no chance to warm us up. Perhaps a soup would? But we were somewhat souped-out, and I had decided to pause on soups, at least for a day! It never lasts longer.

Yes, they are coming in an hour.

Luck had switched gear, heading towards a more promising direction. Only in America!

By the time the service man was done with his fixing work, it was well past a reasonable time for us to still leave for the day, and drive for well over an hour before reaching our planned destination. We needed plan B.

Lunch was a must; later in the day, we would take a walk at Walden Pond, closer to home.

Walden Pond

Tu es vraiment incroyable,” I told P. when I saw him gulp down the potato salad before touching anything else on his plate. I had prepared one with green peas, the first I had been thrilled to find at Whole Foods, a large bouquet of beautiful mint which scent had caught my attention while I was shopping for other things, and thin slices of lean Bresaola purchased with Bayonne ham at my favorite deli in town.

What is in the dressing?” P. mumbled with his mouth still full. I looked up at him and burst into one of my heavy — and unfortunately loud — laughters ( I will not tell you what my dad says it sounds like when I laugh.)

Something secret!

I was kidding, of course. But I knew that, as much as P. knows me well, he was not going to guess this one easily.

I don’t use tahini sauce — and almond butter — the way I used to when I was still a vegetarian. Back then, they were probably much more part of my regular diet. I am quite fond of the wide range of nut butter and spreads we can find. I enjoy them simply spread on a piece of toast — have you tried to combine tahini and honey on a piece of bread? — or mixed in a soup to round it, or in a salad dressing. I find tahini to give a sauce body, a fuller and deliciously nutty taste, perfect for a potato salad. I often add lemon juice and a touch of mustard for a more pronounced flavor, and finish with a flavorful extra virgin olive oil.

The recipe for this potato salad is simple: small Yukon or fingerling potatoes — my real favorites for their concentration of flavor and firmness — and spring green peas are gently blended with a minted tahini-based dressing, with musty and sweet slices of Bresaola, hard-boiled quail eggs and sprinkled gomasio. This dish makes excellent comfort food, ideal eaten as part of a casual lunch, for a summer meal taken outside under your favorite cherry tree, or even packed for a picnic. Really! I have tried this salad in all occasions.

chocolate pot cream tartlets vegetables

Three Vegetable Tartlets — Coconut Milk Chocolate Pots de crème

On our lunch table, there were also vegetable tartlets made with three different vegetables and an olive oil, brown rice and poppyseed crust, served with a side arugula salad tossed in balsamic vinegar and olive oil. But all P. seemed to care about was actually the potato salad — watching his enthusiasm for it was actually nice.


Perhaps we did not manage to follow our initial Sunday plan, but in the end everything fell into place: we recovered a heated house, had a tasty lunch and enjoyed a fun walk in the woods and around the pond. And, when coconut milk chocolate pots de crème came as a way to finish our Sunday afternoon, I knew well that, well really, our day had been pretty good.

I hope that yours was just as good.

Mint Potato, Pea and Bresaola Salad
Mint Potato, Pea and Bresaola Salad

You need:

For the salad:

  • About 600 g small Yukon potatoes, or fingerling potatoes
  • 1 cup peas (shelled and fresh, or frozen)
  • 12 quail eggs
  • 8 slices of bresaola (or 4 slices of Parme or Bayonne ham)
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tarragon, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon mint, chopped + extra leaves
  • 1 tablespoon gomasio*

*Gomasio is a traditional Japanese condiment sprinkled on food in place of table salt. It is typically a blend of sesame seeds and sea salt, with other spices. It can be found in organic stores or in Asian stores

For the dressing:

  • 1 teaspoon tahini
  • 1 teaspoon French mustard
  • 1.5 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


  • Cook the eggs in boiling water for about 3 min. Cool in iced water and break shells. Cut in halves and set aside.
  • Cook the potatoes until tender in boiling water (or steamed). Let cool, peel and cut in big chunks; set aside.
  • Cook the peas in salted boiling water for 2 min. Rinse under iced water and set aside.
  • Prepare the vinaigrette by mixing the ingredients in this order: mustard, tahini, lemon juice and oil.
  • In a large salad bowl, toss gently the potatoes and peas. Add the fresh herbs, the bresaola, the eggs and the chopped herbs. Sprinkle with gomasio and decorate with mint leaves. I suggest not mixing the salad with the sauce too early as the potatoes have a tendency to suck the sauce!
Le coin français
Salade de pommes de terre, petits pois à la menthe et bresaola

Ingrédients :

Pour la salade :

  • Environ 600 g de pommes de terre variété ratte
  • 125 g de petits pois écossés (frais ou surgelés)
  • 12 oeufs de caille
  • 8 petites tranches de bresaola (ou 4 tranches de jambon de Parme ou de Bayonne)
  • 1 càs de persil, haché
  • 1 càs d’estragon, haché
  • 1 càs de menthe, hachée + quelques feuilles
  • 1 càs de gomasio*

*Le gomasio est un codiment typique du Japon, que l’on utilise à la place du sel de table. C’est un mélange de graines de sésame et de sel de mer, avec d’autres épices diverses selon la variété. Ils se trouve en magasin diététique ou dans les magasins de produits asiatiques.

Pour la vinaigrette :

  • 1 càc de tahini
  • 1 càc de moutarde forte
  • 1,5 càs de jus de citron
  • 4 càs d’huile d’olive
  • Sel et poivre

Étapes :

  • Faires cuire les oeufs pendant 3 min dans de l’eau bouillante salée. Rinsez-les sous de l’eau glacée et écalez-les. Coupez-les en deux; réservez.
  • Faites cuire les pommes de terre dans de l’eau bouillante (ou à la vapeur). Une fois cuites, égoutez-les et laissez-les refroidir. Pelez et coupez-les en gros morceaux; mettez-les dans un saladier.
  • Faites cuire les petits pois pendant 2 min dans une casserole remplie d’eau bouillante salée. Rinsez-les sous de l’eau froide, et ajoutez-les aux pommes de terre.
  • Préparez votre vinaigrette en mélangeant les ingredients dans cet ordre: moutarde, tahini, jus de citron et huile d’olive.
  • Mélangez la salade délicatement avec la vinaigrette, et ajoutez les herbes, les tranches de et les oeufs de caille. Saupoudrez de gomasio et décorez avec des feuilles de menthe. Je suggère de ne pas assaisonner la salade trop longtemps à l’avcance car les pommes de terre absorbent beaucoup la sauce.


  1. Well the whole meal sounds just incredible! Not a fan of peas, but I think your recipe will get me past that hurdle. I just adore your Pot de Creme glass dishes, where did you get them as I have to have them?
    As always the mood your pictures reveal is just captivating.

  2. Tiens tiens, ça tombe bien, je viens d’acheter trois paniers de rattes (en promotion) et je cherchais des idées de recettes (même si elles sont délicieuses simplement sautées dans du beurre). Et j’ai aussi du bresaola! C’est le destin!

  3. Looks great! Still a little early here for new potatoes – but the idea is excellent. Also the crust of the three vegetable tartelette sounds great. Any chance of a recipe some time 🙂

  4. wow, you really turned your day around! everything sounds especially nice, and i love all the photos of your walk!
    glad you home is warm again, too. 🙂

  5. I never thought to use tahini in a soup, but now I plan to try it. I am really interested in those pretty tarts…what vegetables do you use besides beets? The crust with poppy seeds sounds excellent too.

  6. formidable ! justement j’ai achete au marche du tahina et ne savais comment l’utiliser… Merci !

  7. Also, I have been meaning to ask you although I’m not sure if you want to reveal all your sources, but where do you get your flatware? I have noticed you have the most gorgeous spoons in the word. The colored acrylic ones… Love them! I wish you’d be teaching a food photography seminar because I’d fly anywhere for that!

  8. entre ta nouvelle bannière et tes photos à tomber, tu suscite l’admiration ! Nous nous sommes bien attardé sur ton blog avec mes hôtes de ce WE pour montrer l’exemple !!!!

  9. J’adore aussi les “fingerlings” qui sont assez nouvelles chez nous. Pour la traduction, j’ai dû rechercher dans le dictionnaire pour trouver “petits poissons”… mais sur le sac, ils ont traduit “doigts dorés”. En préparer en salade est une excellente idée.

    J’ai recherché ta recette de pot de crème au chocolat et lait de coco, en vain…

  10. Depuis le temps que je viens me balader chez toi Béa… et je n’ai encore jamais osé mettre un commentaire… sûrement parce-que je suis à chaque fois tellement fascinée par les photos que j’en oublie de lire tes histoires 🙂
    Alors comme ça tu es passée de végétarienne à plus végétarienne… c’est marrant, j’espère que la transition a été bénéfique!
    J’aime beaucoup ta sauce au tahin, je vais l’essayer.

  11. Bea,
    I love your blog and while I never dream of trying to photograph like you, I would love to try and reproduce the food!In addition to Whole Foods, can you please let us all knwo where you buy your food? What is your favorite deli? Where do you get your fish and meat?

  12. The potato salad looks incredible. I love fingerlings. I like to use them in hash, topped with a poached egg. And that coconut milk pot de creme. I want to know more about THAT!

  13. J’adore cette petite salade! Et tout le reste aussi (mais où sont donc les recettes des tartelettes et des pots de crème au chocolat?). Tes photos sont toujours magnifiques, on a envie de plonger dedans. Mais où trouves-tu donc toute cette inspiration?? Bravo, il faut continuer comme ça 🙂
    Et à quand un livre où nous pourrions retrouver tes magnifiques photos et recettes? 😉

  14. PS : pour la pâte à tarte, quand tu parles de riz brun, il s’agit bien de farine de riz brun?

  15. J’aime et la vinaigrette et la salade de pommes de terre! Cela me donne des envies de picnics !

  16. Well, you won’t be surprised if I tell you that my favorite potato is the fingerling, right?!! The salad sounds delicious, breakfast, lunch and dinner!! What a great scenery on your walk!

  17. The potato salad sounds good but I got my eye on the lovely vegetable tartlets. Looks pretty and yummy!

  18. J’espere que tu posteras la recette des petites cremes chocolat-lait de coco, j’ai trop d’envie de les essayer!
    Superbes pictures comme d’habitude.

  19. Parfaite cette salade, et l’assaisonnement aussi.
    Et oui, nous aussi, c’est le dimanche que ca nous arrive.

  20. Cette recette m’a donné une furieuse envie de salade de pommes de terre !
    Je fais souvent ce genre de sauce pour les salades de crudités mais avec de la purée d’amandes… Je n’y avais pas pensé pour les pommes de terre… Encore une façon de renouveller une salade à la maison.

  21. How about a recipe for those lovely coconut milk chocolate pots de creme? What a nice ending to a beautiful lunch!

  22. Love your posts as usual. The tart base sounds intriguing! any chance of a recipe? thanks!

  23. Hello, First time here. I just want to let you know how much I enjoy reading your writing, recipe and seeing your photographs. They are all wonderful and thanks for sharing:)

  24. A very interesting recipe, it gives me some inspiration. It’s fresh, easy et vraiment gourmande 😉

  25. Brilliant!! I actually had a bag of fingerlings in my hand this morning. I briefly contemplated bring them and some olive oil to work. I figured I could roast them in the toaster oven contraption and have a lunch of them. Then I finished my coffee and realized I was nuts. Now I’m glad I didn’t because that recipe will be made this weekend!

  26. Hello everyone,

    Many many thanks for your generous comments, and encouragements (ie the book! ;-)). Wow, you are the best!
    Now a few answers, yes, I will post the recipes of the chocolate creams and brown rice flour/poppyseeds crust soon. No promise when 😉 but hopefully soon.

    And yes, I saw the article in the Washington Post. Merci! What an honor indeed.

    As to the tahini, oh yes, they are so many ways to use this wonderful ingredient.

    Anyway, have a nice weekend all.

  27. oh that looks wonderful. And the tahini is brilliant. I’m trying that tomorrow.

    So where’s the recipe for the coconut milk pots de creme? Sounds like a perfect dessert for my lactose intolerant self.

  28. Bonjour Bea! Il y a longtemps que je n’étais pas venue sur ton blog… Ta salade de pommes de terre me plaît beaucoup. J’en fais déjà plusieurs versions chez moi, alors j’ajoute la tienne à ma liste.

    Très très joli le nouveau look de ton blog. 🙂

  29. Hi. I really wanted to exchange links! My website is http://www.mychocolateheaven.blogspot.com I hope you like my site as much as I do yours! haha. I have already added your website to mine and I hope you can return the favor. If you do get a chance, please inform me at my website. Thanks!!!

  30. Many thanks by to said me Bea, sorry, I make twice, yes the”n” of gourmande now is OK . Many thanks xxxGloria

  31. omg! this looks fabulous! can’t wait to pick up some gomasio and give it a try. Thanks!

  32. Many thanks again all. Recipes for crust and chocolate pots will follow soon.

  33. My husband just made this for our lunch – delicious! This is perfect food to pack along for a plane ride.

  34. Oh nice Lisa,
    I am thrilled to hear! You are right, perfect plane food. Funny, as I was just writing about that when I read your comment.

  35. Pingback: La Tartine Gourmand’s Potato Salad « Gluten-free Gastronaut

  36. I would like to feature this recipe on my blog (all of your recipes are… amazing!) Please, inform me if i can, and if i can what should i do, and not to do. Thanks so much, congrats for your incredible blog and sorry for my bad english 🙂

  37. Pingback: Salade de patates, la recette glamour de l’été | La marmite de Cathy