Went back to I <3 NY for this blog post; I'm really enjoying this cookbook. This recipe is a little out-of-season; it's essentially a dressed-up version of the summertime classic that is fried chicken with potato salad. But the siren song of fried chicken reeled me in, and I'm glad it did.
What was interesting though was the preparation of the potato salad. Cylinders are punched out of yukon gold potatoes with an apple corer, neatly trimmed, and then boiled in a quart of reduced chicken stock mixed with a cup-and-a-quarter of whole grain mustard. This is a LOT of mustard, and it produced a pungent vinegary aroma as the potatoes cooked. It looked like a roiling cauldron of mustard. After 15 minutes, the potatoes were cooled in the "mustard stock" to room temperature and then stored overnight in the stock.
Cooking in "mustard stock" was a new technique for me, and is one that I'd like to use again, because the results were fantastic. The potatoes took on the flavor of mustard, but not overpoweringly so. Further, the texture of the potatoes was perfect. No trace of chalkiness and the potatoes held their shape without falling apart, or producing little starchy grains on the exterior. I'm curious as to what other vegetables could get this treatment.
The dish was finished with ribbons of English cucumber, a chive-dill buttermilk dressing, dill sprigs and pickled mustard seeds. I feel like I see pickled mustard seeds everywhere now, but I still love them. They always provide an interesting texture and nice vinegary pop to the dish. Further, I love the fun little geometric shapes they make as they clump together.
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