This comes from Health.com with a few embellishments. There’s a few steps you need to go through; boiling, cooling, steaming, peeling, frying…but it’s worth it. It doesn’t actually take that long, but the trick lies in good prep. Just imagine sitting on a porch in the afternoon and adding some accompanying grilled chicken or, even better, tuna – along with a glass of chilled rose’ wine – and this is just plain easy.
For a salad that easily serves 2 as a meal or 4-6 as a side you’ll need: 2 lbs potatoes (either mixed baby potatoes cut in half or a selection of yellow and red potatoes cut into 1″ [max] cubes), 2 eggs (hard boiled *see below), a handful of green beans (ends cut off and cut into 2″ pieces), 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 2 Tbsp buttermilk (you can also use some heavy cream with just a touch of lemon juice added and set to rest for a few minutes before using – the ratio is 1 Tbsp lemon juice to 1 cup cream), 2 Tbsp whole grain mustard, 2 Tbsp fresh chives (chopped), 3 Tbsp scallions (chopped), 1 Tbsp white vinegar, 1/2 tsp paprika, 2 shallots (skinned and sliced into 1/8″ thick slices), 1/3 cup canola oil, 10-12 black olives (pitted and cut in half), 1 small tin anchovies (removed from oil and sliced to half length), 1/3 cup flour, salt and pepper .
Heat a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the potatoes. Set a timer for 11 minutes, bring the water back to a boil and reduce heat slightly to maintain a gentle boil. Once the potatoes are soft enough for a fork to stick into them, but still firm enough to resist it, (which should be about 10-12 mins) drain them into a sieve or colander and allow them to cool to room temperature – 20-30 minutes.
In a bowl, combine mayo, chives, scallions, buttermilk, mustard, vinegar, paprika and a good helping of salt and pepper. Mix well and place into the fridge if not using right away.
Hard bowl the eggs: *place them in a deep pot and cover with cool water so that the water level is at least 1″ above the tops of the eggs. Place on the pot on medium/high heat and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, remove from heat, cover the pot with the eggs and let stand in the hot water for at least 12 minutes. Remove eggs from water with a tablespoon and hold under cold running water. Set aside.
Gently combine the cooled potatoes with some of the mayo/mustard mix (add the mayo/mustard mix to the potatoes in 1 Tbsp batches until you reach the consistency you like – some people like a lot and some like a little – make it work to your taste) and then chill in the fridge.
Place the beans in a steamer for about 3-5 minutes until just tender, but still crisp. Remove from steam and set aside on a small plate to come to room temperature.
Place canola oil in a medium cast iron skillet and heat over medium/high heat. Pace the flour on a small plate and toss the shallot slices in the flour with your hand or a spoon until fully covered. Put the floured shallots into the heated oil and fry for a few minutes on each side turning once as they brown. Be careful not to burn! Remove shallots with a fork and place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
In a large bowl place the potato/mayo/mustard mixture in first. Peel and slice the hard boiled eggs and add them next. Add the steamed beans, sliced olives and anchovies and gently turn the salad over one or two times to combine.
Scatter the fried shallots on top and serve as a meal or alongside some grilled chicken or tuna.