A Potato Salad With Pizzazz

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - July 12, 2006
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Wahiawa resident Brandon Sevilla was born and raised in Hawaii, and is currently a CIA (counter-intelligence agent) at Best Buy in Aiea.

A graduate of Leilehua High School, Brandon took computer courses at Leeward Community College, and hopes to get a degree in information computer science. He is very knowledgeable and enjoys helping folks with all of their computer needs.

For relaxation, Brandon enjoys camping and going to the beach.

Try this tasty potato salad on camping trips or picnics; just make sure it’s kept properly chilled, as it contains perishable ingredients. For a complete meal, just add a tossed green salad and some crusty rolls.

The potato has been a staple in the diet of Andean people since ancient times. Spanish explorers discovered that the potato prevented scurvy and carried them on their ships as early as the 16th century.

The edible part of the plant is the tuber, which grows underground. About 100 varieties of the potato are edible, and differ in flavor, starch content, color and size. Choose firm, undamaged potatoes that have no sprouts or green patches. Do not wash the potato until ready for use, as washing removes their protective coating and will shorten storage life.

To prepare the potato, scrub well and remove eyes and any traces of green.

Stored in a cool, dark and dry place, potatoes can keep for up to two months. Avoid storing in plastic bags, as it increases the possibility of mold. Potatoes may also be kept in a well-ventilated area of the refrigerator.

About 20 percent of the potato is composed of an indigestible starch that is converted to sugar when cooked.

The potato is made up of about 80 percent water and is an excellent source of potassium and a good source of vitamin C. It also contains vitamin B6, niacin, iron, copper, magnesium, folic acid and pantothenic acid. The vitamin C content of potatoes lessens gradually over time, and after six months of storage about half is lost. The potato is said to have medicinal properties in the juice and is believed to be anti-spasmodic, diuretic and sedative. It is also said to relieve scurvy and ulcers.


* 3 pounds potatoes, peeled and diced, and cooked until tender
* 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
* 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
* 11/2 teaspoons dry mustard
* 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
* 1 teaspoon dill
* 3/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
* 1/2 cup Maui onion, finely chopped
* 1 cup low-fat mayonnaise (2 grams fat per serving)
* 2 cans chunk light tuna, rinsed and flaked
* 5 hard-cooked eggs whites, chopped

Drain cooked potatoes and put into large bowl. Whisk together the vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt, dill and pepper, and pour over cooked potatoes. Add onions and mix slightly to combine. Let stand and marinate for 20 minutes. Mix mayonnaise with tuna and egg white. Fold the tuna-egg mixture into the potato mixture. Cover and chill for at least an hour before serving. Note: This salad keeps for two days in the refrigerator if you want to make it ahead of time.

Makes eight servings.

Approximate Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 300 Fat: 3 grams Sodium: 200 milligrams (depending on how much salt you add to taste

Cholesterol: 20 milligrams

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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