As the name suggests, Ensalada Rusa, (Russian Salad), really does have roots in Russia. The popular potato salad is made with varying ingredients in countries across Latin America – this one is my own version of El Salvador’s Ensalada Rusa which features the bright color of beets. My suegra used to make a simpler version of the recipe below, (I added green onions and cilantro for flavor and color – I also leave the skin on the potatoes and use light instead of full fat mayonnaise to make it healthier.)
Serve this alongside carne asada or grilled hamburgers and you’ve got yourself a tasty summer side dish. Going to a potluck? Bring along a pretty pink batch of Ensalada Rusa and watch it stand out from all the white and yellow potato salads on the table!
4 large potatoes – washed, boiled until tender, cooled and diced
3 large eggs – boiled, cooled, shelled, and diced
1 can of beets, diced
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
small handful green onions, washed and diced
small handful of cilantro, washed and chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1. For a more authentic version of Ensalada Rusa, you can remove the potato skin, I leave it on because it’s healthy and you won’t really notice it once mixed into the salad. Some people will also say you should boil your own beets instead of using canned but Carlos and I love canned beets and that’s what my suegra used to use when preparing Ensalada Rusa in the United States.
2. In a large bowl, add the mayonnaise. (You can substitute Salvadoran crema if you wish.)
3. Add the potatoes, eggs, beets, green onions and cilantro and toss gently until combined.
4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
5. Refrigerate covered for an hour until chilled.
6. Serves 6.