It’s not easy to make a name for yourself in the potato world. Take, for instance, these NY 118’s, bred at Cornell University and available now at Keith’s Farm stand at the Union Square Greenmarket. Not only is the aspiring spud required to resist pests like the dreaded golden nematode and then hold its own in a pot of boiling water, it has to look good and taste delicious. Still in its numbers-only trial stage, the hardworking potato hopes to gain enough of a following to earn an actual name like other recent Cornell grads including the Adirondack Blue and the Lehigh, formerly known as NY 126.
Sara Jenkins’s New-Potato Salad
2 pounds NY 118 potatoes (or substitute any small or even tiny freshly dug new potatoes)
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon red-wine vinegar
1/3 cup mixed chopped fresh herbs, such as flat-leaf parsley, tarragon, oregano, basil, mint, chervil, summer savory, and/or chives
Fine sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper to taste
Place potatoes in a medium saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Cook until potatoes are tender but not falling apart, about 15 to 20 minutes (or about 8 minutes if you’re using very small potatoes). While potatoes are cooking, heat three tablespoons olive oil in saucepan over medium heat. (1) Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in mustard and vinegar, then whisk in remaining tablespoon oil to combine. Add herbs and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (2) Drain cooked potatoes, cut into bite-size pieces, and place in a large bowl. (3) Add warm dressing and toss to combine. Season as needed with salt and pepper, and serve warm or at room temperature.
Adapted with permission from Olives & Oranges, by Sara Jenkins and Mindy Fox; available from Houghton Mifflin & Co. in September.