Can you ever add too much bacon to a dish? That was one of the questions pondered recently when Average Betty, a.k.a. Los Angeles food vlogger Sara O'Donnell, stopped by the L.A. Times Test Kitchen to visit Test Kitchen director Noelle Carter to make roasted potato salad.
With plenty of bacon, of course.
Average Betty was gearing up for the Taste, the Los Angeles Times food and wine festival set for Labor Day weekend at Paramount Pictures Studios. Times Food editor Amy Scattergood, deputy Food editor Jenn Harris, columnist Russ Parsons, restaurant critic Jonathan Gold and Carter, with the help of top L.A. chefs, are bringing you the best of food, wine and more. Full schedule here.
Carter is cohosting Sunday's Brunch and BBQ Party with Scattergood and chef Corina Weibel of Canelé, wrapping up the holiday on a gourmet note. She gave Average Betty a taste of what's to come by demonstrating her tweaks to the classic salad.
One of her tricks? Roasting the potatoes before assembling the salad. That, and adding plenty of bacon. You can find the recipe below.
Watch, learn and laugh as these two yuk it up in the test kitchen: Video: Roasted potato salad in the L.A. Times Test Kitchen.
Then leave the cooking to the best chefs in L.A. as they redefine brunch with some of the most over-the-top eats this city has to offer. New for the Sunday brunch event this year is the addition of barbecue, which is sure to be a crowd favorite. After all, who doesn't love some 'cue?
Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes | Serves 8 to 10
4 pounds new or fingerling potatoes, cleaned and halved lengthwise
3/4 teaspoon chopped garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound thick-cut bacon
1 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons whole grain mustard, or to taste
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, or to taste
1/2 red onion, trimmed and sliced lengthwise into 1/8 -inch slices
1/4 cup capers
1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, toss the potatoes with the garlic, olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and several grinds of pepper. Place the potatoes in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast the potatoes until golden brown and tender, about 1 hour, tossing occasionally. Remove and cool.
2. While the potatoes are roasting, cut the bacon crosswise into one-fourth-inch pieces. Cook the bacon in a large saute pan over medium heat until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crisp, about 15 minutes. Stir frequently, watching that the bacon does not stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat and drain the bacon on a paper towel-lined plate, reserving the grease for another use.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard and red wine vinegar. Season with one-half teaspoon salt and several grinds of black pepper. Taste and adjust mustard, vinegar and seasoning if desired.
4. In a large bowl, combine the potatoes and bacon with the sliced onion. Gently stir in enough dressing to coat, then stir in the capers. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
5. Cover and refrigerate the salad for at least 2 hours to allow the flavors to develop. The salad will keep for 3 days, refrigerated. Allow the salad to warm slightly at room temperature before serving.
Each of 10 servings: 420 calories; 11 grams protein; 34 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 28 grams fat; 5 grams saturated fat; 29 mg. cholesterol; 696 mg. sodium.
Love cooking as much as I do? Follow me @noellecarter