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Potato salad with bacon and apples

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July 2, 2008

Serves 8

5 thick strips bacon (about 5 ounces), cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large Spanish onion, cut in 1/4-inch dice
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for the cooking water
2 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and cut in 1/2-inch dice
3 pounds small Yukon Gold potatoes, quartered (or 3 pounds large Yukon Golds, cut in 1/2-inch dice)
Handful fresh chives, thinly sliced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1. In a heavy-based skillet over medium heat, render the bacon, stirring occasionally, until it browns. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels.

2. Add the onion to the fat in the pan, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 minutes or until the onion softens and starts to turn golden brown. With a slotted spoon, transfer the onion to a small bowl. Add the apple.

3. In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes, cold water to cover by a couple of inches, and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and cover the pan. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a paring knife. Drain well.

4. In a large serving bowl, toss the potatoes with the onion mixture, bacon, chives, oil, vinegar, mustard, 1 teaspoon of the thyme, the pepper, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Toss well. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper, if you like. Sprinkle with the remaining thyme. If necessary, cover and set aside at room temperature for up to 1 hour before serving. Tony Rosenfeld

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