Food Hunter's Guide to Cuisine: Last Minute Labor Day Potato Salad with Pancetta, Rosemary and Lemon

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Last Minute Labor Day Potato Salad with Pancetta, Rosemary and Lemon

Still scrambling for a side dish to complete your Labor Day menu?  Try this potato salad. Seasoned with herbs, olive oil and lemon juice it's not as heavy as your traditional mayonnaise based potato salad but still packs a lot of flavor due to the crumbled pancetta on top.

 Potato Salad with Pancetta, Rosemary, and Lemon
(adapted from Epicurious)
5 ounces 1/8-inch-thick slices pancetta (Italian bacon; about 5 slices)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel
1 garlic clove, pressed
2/3 cup olive oil
3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
3 large celery stalks, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange pancetta slices on rimmed baking sheet, spacing apart. Bake until golden brown and crisp, about 20 minutes (do not turn). Drain on paper towels. Cool. Coarsely chop pancetta.
Meanwhile, whisk lemon juice, rosemary, lemon peel, and garlic in small bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Place potatoes in large pot. Add enough cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to boil; reduce heat to medium. Simmer with lid ajar until tender, 18 to 25 minutes, depending on size of potatoes. Drain; let stand until cool enough to handle, about 20 minutes.

Cut potatoes into 1/4-inch-thick slices (remove skin, if desired). Place in large bowl; add celery. Drizzle dressing over; toss gently to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and chill until cold, at least 2 hours.

DO AHEAD: Pancetta and potato salad can be made 1 day ahead. Cover pancetta; chill. Keep potato salad chilled. Bring pancetta to room temperature before continuing.

Sprinkle pancetta and chopped parsley over potato salad.


  1. Pancetta on potato salad? Why haven't I ever tried that before? Sounds like a knock-out winner.

  2. I love the addition of rosemary to the potatoes - and I always have fresh rosemary to hand :)

  3. I LOVE potatoes in any form, and these look phenomenal!!

  4. Isn't it just a little bit sad that you always need someone to show you something amazing yet simple to realize it was simple in the first place?

    I've never made anything but a basic potato salad. It's just not something I've ever considered "improving upon."

    Thanks for showing me the light!

  5. A little bit of pancetta can do wonders...and with rosemary and lemon? Perfect. Thank you for making me smile and my stomach growl. I hope you are having a wonderful evening, my friend. Love from Austin.