Most of us will be familiar with Russian salad, a mix of diced potatoes, meat and vegetables in a creamy mayonnaise.
In Spain however, if you see Ensaladilla Rusa on the menu, you will be served a tuna and potato salad. In fact the Spanish version of Russian salad is so popular it has now been classed as a national dish and can be found in tapas bars and cafes all over Spain.
It is one of my favourite Summer dishes. It uses store cupboard ingredients and is quick and easy to prepare. Traditionally the eggs are chopped and mixed in but I prefer to quarter them and use them as a garnish.
note – if you happen to make my sweet pickled courgettes try substituting chopped courgettes for the dill pickle and some of the sweet pickling vinegar for the white wine or cider vinegar, you won’t be disappointed.
(Russian salad Spanish style)
1 medium carrot, diced
100 g fresh or frozen peas
2 eggs, hard boiled , diced or quartered
salt and pepper, to taste
450 g cooked new potatoes, diced
1 x 200g can tuna in olive oil, drained
1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
2 sweet dill pickles, diced
150 ml mayonnaise
2 -3 tablespoons white wine or cider vinegar
2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
Cook the carrot until crunch tender, plunge in to cold water to halt the cooking process then drain well. set aside.
If using fresh peas, bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add the fresh peas. Cook for 2 minutes or until bright green and tender. Drain and rinse with cold water. If using frozen peas, rinse with cold water.
In a large bowl, combine the potatoes, carrots, eggs, tuna, shallot, and pickles. Toss gently.
Make the dressing by whisking the mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons vinegar, parsley, salt, and pepper together. Add more vinegar , 1 teaspoon at a time, to thin the mayonnaise until it is the consistency of a coating sauce.
Add the dressing to the salad with the peas and toss again. Transfer to a shallow bowl and serve.