My husband first met Laura Allen when he was in Peace Corps, West Africa in the 70s. Since then, continuously, Laura has been a good and loyal friend to our family. We always looked forward to her visits in our homes overseas and in the States, as she opened up her own home to us in Florida. She arrived with laughter, good advice and good books. She is the kind of company admired by my idol, Jane Austin: “My idea of good company is the company of clever, well-informed people who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company”. She also has interesting and enjoyable ideas like the tattoo clinic where I got my ankle “rose” tattoo, and now, white sweet potato salad with chilli lime mayonnaise.
I had never seen a white sweet potato until I arrived in an African market, intending to make a sweet potato pie for Christmas. As the stall owners pointed out white potato after white potato, I insisted that the potato I wanted was orange or rouge(red) and sweet. Rolling their eyes and shoving a slice of raw potato in my hand to taste, they asked how many I wanted. “They’re the wrong color”, I muttered under my breath in English, resisting change, but bought 2 lbs. The pie was wonderful and I continued to use the white sweet potato in other recipes. I really wanted to try Laura’s rendition of potato salad but here in Honesdale, we only have “normal” sweet potatoes and yams, orange not white 🙁 All the way from North Carolina, Laura addressed that problem and mailed me a box of white sweet potatoes! Thank you my friend for both the inspiration and potatoes. A delicious surprise!
Along with the white sweet potatoes and chilli lime mayonnaise, you can include your usual ingredients or switch it up as you like. I made my usual with chopped onions, pimentos, hard boiled eggs and chopped gherkins. I didn’t add mustard because I thought the lime juice would be adequate for the zing I usually get from mustard, but you could.
I never measure my potato salad ingredients, unless I’m making Japanese potato salad, but just do a guestimate according to the amount of potatoes. I made a full cup of the chilli lime mayonnaise so that I’d have leftovers for fish or sandwiches. If you don’t want to do this, half the ingredients.
I made a small salad as a nest for the potato salad that I could wedge onto my husband’s huge birthday lunch plate.
Today is his birthday but he wanted his lunch yesterday because he started distance working today. In our twenties, when we had the money, we would eat like this for celebrations; porterhouse steaks, baked potatoes stuffed with butter, sour cream, bacon and chives, plus ice cream. And we could, and did finish the lot! Yesterday it was sort of sad because he had to stop at half his steak and half his potato. No more room for them. Yet he did get an extra helping of the potato salad 😀
Chilli Lime Mayonnaise
1 cup good mayonnaise
Juice from 1 1/2 limes
2 tbsp garlic flavored chilli – Rooster on the jar front
Mix and refrigerate.