Sitting in a random deli in Providence, RI, on an April Friday afternoon, I was drinking some odd flavor of coffee (that was actually really tasty, and I’m not usually a fan of flavored coffee). Jack left me alone for about 3 minutes while the deli woman made a hot chocolate for him. When he came back, I was talking about “potato nachos” and describing flavors and asking the poor man whether kale was the right choice to go with onion dip. He’s used to this.
I knew I wanted potatoes and Kiss Me if You Dare onion dip (but maybe with the scallions on top instead of mixed in). Baked/roasted kale seemed likely, as it’s my favorite nacho ingredient lately. But it needed another flavor, and I thought that it was likely a meat. I ended up texting Denise to discuss what was missing from this weird recipe plan I was devising in my head. We decided it was pastrami, and man, were we right!
Have I scared you off describing the process of recipe development in my head? It’s really random. Turns out, potato “nachos” wasn’t quite right. Nachos implies chips, and while I made baked homemade potato chips, they really weren’t the right vehicle for this mess of flavors. Roasted cubed potatoes were exactly right.
The onion dip is based on caramelized onions, with a mix of pureed white beans and Earth Balance vegan mayo — if you can’t do the mayo, consider trying it with Denise’s Aquafaba Mayo recipe. It’s one more step, but worth it! The potatoes are fluffy and slightly salty, with creamy onion-y dip, a bit of crunch from kale, the brightness of green onions, and the … what exactly is the right way to describe pastrami? I don’t know what it is, but it was the flavor I was looking for to bring it all together.
I think this is a pretty great meal for a night you’re craving junk food or bar food. Not that it’s either, but it’s got a good mix of salty and crunchy and oily and creamy. I don’t run nutritional profiles on my recipes, and you won’t feel like running a marathon after this, but you also won’t be completely weighed down. You could also make a big batch as a snack to share. It’s relatively scalable, but the printable recipe below is for two servings.
For a meal, per person, you will need:
- about 1 cup of roasted potato cubes (olive oil, salt)
- 1/4 cup of Kiss Me if You Dare Onion Dip
- 1/2-1 cup of roasted kale
- 2-3 slices of deli pastrami, rolled and sliced thin
- 2 green onions, tops only, sliced thin
Enjoy! And let us know if you try any additions or substitutions — especially if you try this without the meat. We’d love to hear some variations.