The Forth of July conjures up images of family and friends gathered together to celebrate our nation's freedom. For many of us, the celebration takes place while enjoying fireworks, corn-on-the-cob, grilled meats, potato salad and good-old American beer. Many times, when it comes to the grilling aspect of these summer holidays, the meat often becomes the star of the show and the side dishes become an afterthought. Well, not anymore with this fantastic grilled potato salad.
My good friend Jack, who is a gourmand and fabulous cook came up with this dish one evening when we were on our way to another friend's house for a BBQ. He had decided to make a side dish but wanted to take advantage of our friend's real outdoor grill (a rarity in these urban parts) and, being anything but a standard cook, didn't want to do the standard grilled veggie side dish. Instead, he took another summer time BBQ favorite, potato salad, and adapted that dish to the grill by parboiling sliced potatoes and then grilling them with spicy chorizo and scallions. Like everything else that Jack makes, the dish turned out absolutely delicious.
The only change I made to Jack's original recipe was the substitution of garlic scapes for scallions. Scallions are great in this dish, but when I saw fresh garlic scapes at the market earlier this week, I could not pass up the opportunity to do a little cooking with them, and this seemed like a perfect application.
Garlic scapes may seem like an unusual ingredient to cook with, but many of us have unintentionally started to grow garlic scapes in our own kitchens. Have you ever kept a bulb of garlic too long and green stems started sprouting from the top of the bulb? Well, that was the beginning of a garlic scape. As would be assumed, scapes taste quite garlicy, however are not quite as aggressive as garlic cloves. When they are young, the scapes can be enjoyed in many different ways, one of the most popular being garlic scape pesto (delish!). But for this particular preparation, I grilled them along with the potatoes and chorizo, which mellows out their flavor a little and gives them a slight char. But, if you can't find scapes, use scallions instead. You can't go wrong either way.
Grilled Potato & Chorizo Salad
1 lb. baby red potatoes
2 links or 1/2 lb. spicy chorizo (fully cooked)
6 garlic scapes or scallions
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for coating
salt & pepper to taste
Slice potatoes into 1/3" rounds. Place slices in a sauce pan, cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Cook for about 4 mins, or until starting to get tender but not fully cooked. Drain well.
Coat parboiled potatoes and the garlic scapes in olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Place potatoes, scapes and chorizo on preheated grill. Char on both sides, flipping once. Remove from the grill. Chop the chorizo and scapes into a small dice and place in a large bowl with the potatoes. Toss with lemon juice and olive oil, breaking up potatoes slightly if desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper.