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Papas a la Hauncaína with Queso Fresco

Papas a la Hauncaína with Queso FrescoA unique and utterly delicious potato salad served with a cheese and chile sauce. Recipe by Chef Jorge de la Torre.

Recipe Ingredients:

2 pounds (about 8 potatoes) Yukon gold, purple or new red potatoes or a mixture
1 cup Wisconsin Queso Fresco
1 cup evaporated milk
2 to 3 tablespoons aji amarillo paste* or jalapeño chile, minced
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 to 8 saltine or soda crackers, crumbled
3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
12 leaves Bibb lettuce
4 hard cooked eggs, quartered
2 tomatoes, cut in thin wedges
8 to 10 pitted kalamata olives

Cooking Directions:

  1. Place potatoes in large pot; cover with cold salted water. Cook until tender. Drain; cool. Peel and half lengthwise or cut in thick rounds.
  2. Place Queso Fresco, evaporated milk, chile paste and turmeric in blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. With motor running, add crackers, one at a time, to thicken sauce. With motor running, drizzle in oil. Add more crackers if sauce is too thin. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Line serving platter with lettuce leaves. Place potatoes on top of lettuce. Spoon half of the chile-cheese sauce over potatoes. Garnish platter with eggs and tomatoes. Sprinkle olives over potatoes.
  4. Serve cold or at room temperature. Pass remaining sauce.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

*Aji amarillo is a South American chile widely used in Peruvian cooking. The paste can be found in Latin American stores.

Recipe and photograph courtesy of Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Inc.