"Recently a big fuss has been made about raw foods, as if they were going to save the human race And although there's undoubtedly something to be said for including uncooked foods in our diets, it's worth remembering that a salad can include cooked vegetable as well and that the salad bowl is a perfect place for leftovers or vegetables you cook in advance, knowing you're going to serve them at room temperature or cold- which is just about all that distinguishes many salads from vegetable dishes.
A salad is, in fact, one of the most difficult things to define. A few leaves or a sliced fruit with a minimum of dressing, something refreshing at the beginning or end of a meal, or a bowlful of vegetables that is the meals's centerpiece?"
Potato Salad With Cream Cheese Dressing
Makes 4 servings
Takes 25 minutes, plus time to chill
An intense potato salad that rates about a 10 on the decadence scale and whose origins are in Peru, the land of many potato dishes.
1 1/2 pounds potatoes, like new red potatoes, fingerling, Yukon Gold or even russet baking potatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup cream
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
minced fresh chives, parsley or dill
* Peel the potatoes if you like, or wash and scrub them well, then cut them into bite sized pieces. Put them in a pot with enough water to cover them and add a large pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat so the water bubbles gently. Cook the potatoes until tender but still firm and not mushy. 15 minutes or so, depending on the potato. Drain, rinse in cold water for a minute, then drain again.
* While the potatoes are boiling, put the cream cheese and cream in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat, stirring occasionally until the cheese is melted and the dressing thickens. Remove from the heat, whisk in the lemon juice and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Let the dressing cool a bit.
* When the dressing and potatoes are still slightly warm but not hot, pour the dressing on the potatoes, sprinkle with chives and carefully fold the mixture together. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly cold. Before serving, taste and adjust the seasoning.