Salad Olivier

A delicious salad that is almost a must in the Persian cuisine. We always serve Salad Olivier on our buffet when there is a festivity. There are many stories about this salad – but I have been told that the salad originates from Russia – the Iranians loved it so much, so they have made their own version. The Russian version has carrots, green peas, and dill. Once in a while, they also mix in some apples. The Iranian version is delicious and straightforward without too many ingredients. This is indeed a delightful salad that compliments any buffet, wonderful to have as school-lunch or on a picnic. I have also tried it with cured salmon instead of chicken, which was much appreciated.

Ingredients 2 – 3 portions
200 grams (7.05 ounces) chicken fillet
200 grams (7.05 ounces) of solid potatoes
200 grams (7.05 ounces) of pickled gherkin (cornichons) or salt-pickled cucumber finely chopped.
200 grams (7.05 ounces) of hard-boiled eggs (approx. 4 eggs)

Method:

  1. Chop the cornichons or the salt-pickled cucumber in small pieces, set aside.
  2. Boil the eggs for 10 minutes, pour cold water over them, and peel when cold enough to handle. Use an egg-cutter to slice it twice, as shown in the video.
  3. Place a carrot together with an onion and some celery stalks in a saucepan.
  4. Place the chicken filet, some salt, bay leaves, and a few (3- 4) peppercorns (choose the one you like), pour water to cover, and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat when it starts to boil and let simmer for 10 – 15 minutes depending on the chicken filet size. Please do not over-cook the filet; it will most certainly ruin the Taste! Let it cool in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before you cut it into small pieces.
  5. Peel the potatoes and cut them into small pieces, as shown in the video. Boil them for 10 minutes, check if soft – drain, and let cool in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  6.  Mix one dl (approx. half a cup) of mayonnaise with equal parts of cream fraiche.
  7. Add a tsp or two Dijon mustard; Taste the dressing and adjust seasoning. When satisfied with the taste, add the salad and mix thoroughly.

Decorate the salad with rings of hard-boiled eggs, chopped or whole olives, and or pickled gherkins that you cut into stripes or the shape that suits you. Enjoy!

Variation:
As mentioned above, if you replace the chicken with, for example, cured salmon, you can season the dressing with fresh or dried dill; otherwise, follow the recipe above.

Sometimes cooked, chilled green peas are added to the salad- do not take as much as the other ingredients, 1/4 the amount is more than enough, i.e., you take 200 grams of chicken fillet, so you can take 50 grams of cooked green peas. I personally never use green peas or carrots in this salad.

Enjoy

Notes: You can use leftover chicken – but the skin is a no! no!
Sometimes I use Turkish yogurt instead of crème fraiche. – the most important thing is to taste and adjust it to your own taste buds!

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