We went to a friend’s house for dinner last night. I was to bring a fennel salad with burrata, yam casserole, potato avocado salad and a no-bake mango cheesecake. The ingredients for the dishes were prepared and packed in separate containers. Then I took a shower, blow-dried my hair, put on makeup, got dressed and changed a few pairs of shoes before settling on a pair of Alexander Wang heels. That was when I looked at the clock and realized that we were going to be late. In the rush to leave the house, I left the pickled red onion for the potato salad and the burrata for the fennel salad in the fridge at home. The mangos that I used to make the mango cheesecake were not as flavorful as the ones from Malaysia where I first made the cake. I’m afraid that I have kind of ruined the Hungry Empress’s reputation.
So today I remade the less-than-ideal dishes to redeem myself at least in my own mind. I wish I could switch the dishes from last night like how people exchange gifts that don’t fit them on Boxing Day.
I received a beautiful two-toned ceramic serving bowl from my friend, whose house we were at last night. I used it to serve my potato salad with the right ingredients for lunch. So Amy, if you read this, this is what I meant to bring yesterday.
Potato Salad with Fennel, Avocado and Eggs in Greek Yogurt Dressing
Ingredients for the salad:
10 medium red skin potatoes, boiled and diced with skin on or off
1 tender fennel bulb, rough parts discarded and chopped
3 to 4 avocados, diced
4 to 5 boiled eggs
Pickled red onion from 1/2 red onion
Fresh lemon juice to coat the diced
Ingredients for pickled onion:
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup apple red wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon salt
Ingredients for the dressing:
1 cup Fage or other Greek yogurt
2 to 3 tablespoons pale mustard
2 stocks green onions, minced (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix all the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl and set aside.
To make pickled onion, bring vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1/2 cup water to a simmer in a small saucepan. Add onion, bring to boil again and then remove from heat, and let sit 4 to 5 minutes; drain. Drain and let pickled onion cool. Pickled onion should be crispy. Don’t over cook it or let it stay in the hot brine for too long.
Boil the eggs for 5 minutes (counting from after the water boils) and rinse with cold water. Do not over boil the egg. The yolks will get flaky if you overcook them. Peel and cut into quarters.
Cook the potatoes in a pot of water to al dente and cut into bite size.
Cube the avocados and chop the fennel bulb. To prevent the avocado from browning, coat the cubes with a little fresh lemon juice.
Toss all salad ingredients with the dressing. Garnish with fennel fronds and serve at room temperature.
The recipe makes 8 to 10 serving. You can easily half the recipe for fewer people.
I made a similar potato salad with chili peppers in the dressing when I was in Malaysia. You can check out that recipe by clicking on the link here.
Fennel Salad with Burrata:
2 medium heads fennel, cored and very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for serving
6 strips lemon zest, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon lemon juice
8 to 12 oz burrata
Fennel fronds for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place fennel, oil, zest and lemon juice in a dish; season with salt and pepper. Let stand 10 to 20 minutes. Just before serving, arrange fennel salad on a large platter. Cut burrata into halves or quarters and lay on fennel. Drizzle with additional olive oil, if desired. Garnish with fennel fronds.
The original recipe calls for 1/2 cup of mint leaves, but I found the salad delicious without it.