Mediterranean Potato Salad

Med Potato Salad


I found the original recipe for this at Simply Recipes while searching for a mayo-free potato salad. When it’s a million degrees here I want something that can handle the heat and stay safe longer than mayo-based salads. This has become a staple in my house! It’s good cold or at room temperature, and the simplified version I make comes together crazy quick.

Here’s what you need:

  • 2 pounds red potatoes, scrubbed clean and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1/2 pound green beans, trimmed and cut
  • 1 16-ounce jar roasted red peppers
  • Juice of two lemons
  • 1 tbsp mustard
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  1. Boil the potatoes in salted water until they’re easily pierced with a fork; scoop them out but don’t drain the water
  2. Boil the green beans in the same water until they’re also tender, or as tender as you like if you’re one of those “tender-crisp” people
  3. Cut the peppers into strips or dice, whatever your little heart desires
  4. Whisk together the lemon juice, mustard, olive oil, salt, and pepper, then add in all the vegetables; taste, and add more salt if needed (potatoes need a lot, I find)

Variations: you can change out the lemon juice for any kind of vinegar: champaign, red wine, balsamic, or apple cider vinegar are all good. You can add some Tony Chachere’s or similar in place of some of the salt if you like a kick to it.

Once it’s been chilled in the fridge, I like it to sit out about 30 minutes or so till the chill is knocked off a bit; then it’s perfect for me.

What other variations should we try?

Fresh salsa

I know. A salsa recipe! From ME! It’s shocking. I’ll give you a minute while you collect yourself.

This one comes courtesy of my BFF’s boyfriend, and it is so good. Very different from my usual roasted salsa roja, and perfect for right now when the tomatoes are in season and easy to find. Around here we can still find a farmer with a card table of tomatoes and a cigar box for cash sitting out at the end of the driveway. Best tomatoes in the world!

Anyway, the salsa is also easily customizable, so you can make it anywhere from diced tomatoes to melt-your-face-off hot (which, you’ve probably figured out by now, is my preferred level of heat).

Fresh salsa:

  • 6 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 medium-large white onion
  • 3 serrano peppers
  • 1 bunch cilantro*
  • salt, and black pepper to taste
  • 3 large limes

To assemble:

  1. Dice tomatoes, onion, and peppers and stir together in a bowl
  2. Chop the cilantro and add in
  3. Add salt and pepper, then squeeze in the juice from the limes
  4. Stir, and enjoy! The longer it sits, the hotter it gets — just something to keep in mind

*A note on cilantro: for the last three years or so I kind of hate it (pregnancy was weird), so the first time I made this myself I just left it out. And I MISSED it. It really makes that much of a difference, so my advice is to try just a little bit in it even if you think you hate it.

Random: this reminds me so much of the now-defunct Salsa Y’all. Does anyone else remember that?

Bourbon slushes

It’s Lissa‘s birthday! Despite the fact that we’re a few states away from each other these days, I’m celebrating with her bourbon slushes. These are such a great hot-weather drink, and are easy to make for a crowd, something Lissa almost always has at her house. 🙂 You should keep these in your freezer this summer!

Bourbon Slushes


  • 2 tea bags
  • 2 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 6 oz lemonade concentrate
  • 6 oz orange juice concentrate
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups bourbon
  • 7-Up


  1. Steep the two tea bags in the 2 1/2 cups boiling water
  2. Stir in lemonade and orange juice concentrates, water, and bourbon to the tea in a freezer-safe container
  3. Freeze for 24 hours or so (it won’t freeze completely solid because of the bourbon), then use an ice cream scoop or sturdy spoon to scoop into glasses
  4. Top with 7-Up, stir and serve

What are other summer drinks you love??

Happy birthday, girlfriend!

Peach pie

This is Magee’s peach pie recipe and I just love it. She scribbled it on a post-it note for me years ago and I go back to it every year. As you can see in the picture, I have a hard time waiting for the pie to actually cool before I eat it, so mine gets messy. Maybe you’ll have more patience than I do. 😉

Informal poll! How do you like your peach pie? Plain? With ice cream? With whipped cream? My Grandpa used to top his apple pie with half a slice of American cheese; I was never sure how I felt about that.  What’s your vote for peach pie?

Peach pie


  • 2 pie crusts of your choice
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 4 cups peaches, sliced (this can be approximate)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. corn starch
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp butter


  1. Preheat oven to 450F
  2. Place one pie crust in your pie pan and brush with some of the egg (so the crust doesn’t get soggy)
  3. Gently mix together the peaches, sugar, corn starch, lemon juice, cinnamon and nutmeg, then pour into pie pan
  4. Cut up the butter and dot it over the top of the pie, then top with the other pie crust. Be sure to cut slits or use a pie bird so the steam can escape, and brush the top crust with the rest of the egg
  5. Put the pie pan on a foil-covered cookie sheet for easy cleanup of any spillover, then bake for 10 minutes 450, then add a pie shield or cover the crust edges with foil
  6. Reduce temp to 350F and bake another 30 minutes or so, until juice is bubbling through crust vents


North Carolina pie

This recipe comes from Crook’s Corner restaurant in Chapel Hill, N.C. by way of Katie Workman, by way of NPR. It was tweeted and retweeted and favorited all over the place till I decided I just had to try it out. This turned out to be an excellent decision.

It’s very similar in construction to key lime pie , with the obvious difference of a Saltine crust, which is fabulous. This pie is sweet and tart and salty all at once — everything a summer dessert should be.

North Carolina pie


  • 1 1/2 sleeves Saltine crackers
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • whipped cream and coarse sea salt for garnish (which I completely forgot)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Crush the crackers pretty finely, but not to complete dust. Add the sugar and knead in the butter till the mixture holds together like dough
  3. Press into an 8 inch pie pan, chill for 15 minutes, then bake for 18 minutes or until the crust is slightly browned
  4. While the crust is partially cooling, beat the egg yolks and milk together, then mix in citrus juice, making sure everything is completely combined. Pour into the pie shell (it doesn’t need to be completely cooled), and bake for 16 minutes or until the filling has set
  5. Chill pie completely now, and serve with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt

Make this. You will not be sorry. 🙂