I have been coveting purslane for a while now. The first time I tried it was at a wine/food pairing last year at Town, one of my favorite local restaurants. where they have some growing in their garden. There it was put into a pasta for a tasting dish. My friend girlichef has featured it a couple of times (like in this salad), and I coveted it even more. Finally, a few weeks ago when my Mom was here, I stumbled across some at the farmer's market and I bought a big bunch to play with.
Although it is considered to be a weed here in the United States, purslane is a succulent that is cultivated and used throughout the world. It can be cooked--steamed, sauteed or put in a stir-fry, or eaten raw and has a somewhat tangy taste. It has an excellent health profile--it is full of Omega-3 fatty acids and contains more of them than any other leafy veggie. It also contains vitamins like A, C and B and minerals like calcium, magnesium, iron and potassium.
Potato and Purslane Salad
from You Are What You Eat Blog
"Don't use all the salad dressing at first--pour a little on and see how much you'll need. Any that's left over will be good on pasta or tossed salad."
6 small to medium redskin potatoes, scrubbed and unpeeled
2 cups washed purslane leaves
4 scallions, sliced thin
1/2 cup olive oil
2 T. lemon juice (or more, to taste)
2 T. red wine vinegar (or more, to taste)
garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 tsp. dry tarragon
1/2 to 1 tsp. salt, or to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
Cook the potatoes with their skins on until just tender. Drain and plunge into cold water. Let cool. Peel and cut into slices, chunks, or dice, as you prefer.
Chop purslane coarsely. Add purslane and scallions to potatoes.
Mix dressing ingredients until emulsified (I like to shake them in a jar). Pour over salad until it looks and tastes right. Chill. If the salad sits around in the fridge for a while before serving, you may need to add a little more dressing just at serving time so it's moist enough.
Notes/Results: Really good. The dressing really works well with the mellow potatoes and slightly tangy purslane. This was easy to prepare, although pulling all the leaves, or at least the larger leaves, off the purslane is a bit tedious. Although the salad, which I served with simple grilled lamb chops with a mint-mac nut pesto and pita bread, was really pretty good, I felt that it was missing something. The answer? Capers! We added some capers to the leftover salad and ate it for lunch the next day and it took it from good to great. I will make this again---with the capers of course.
I am linking this salad to the Hearth and Soul Blog Hop, (food from your hearth that feeds and nourishes your soul), hosted by girlichef, along with A Moderate Life, Hunger and Thirst, and Frugality and Crunchiness wth Christy.