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Zack Brown, the man behind the potato salad Kickstarter campaign is photographed on Sept. 18, 2014 in Columbus, Ohio. Brown is planning PotatoStock 2014, an all-ages, charity-minded party Saturday in downtown Columbus featuring bands, food trucks, beer vendors, potato-sack races and definitely potato salad. His effort on Kickstarter in early July to buy potato salad ingredients took on a life of its own and attracted worldwide attention as the amount grew. The 31-year-old eventually raised $55,492. (AP Photo/The Columbus Dispatch, Chris Russell)

(Potato) Salad Days

Look, Zack Brown is a goofball.

The dude who helped create one of the more hilariously stimulating crowd-funding campaigns of all-time (“I plan to make potato salad”) gave Columbus—and the Internet—a true gift.

But ole “Danger” Brown is a goofball with a heart of gold, and at it turns out, marketing savvy sharpened by a true instinct for how to turn a pile of potatoes into stacks of cheddar.

He already converted the campaign’s $55,492 into a giant party dubbed Potato Stock (which in turn raised funds for a recurring trust from the Columbus Foundation), and now he’s back in the potato game with a new cookbook, no doubt just one of many projects we’ll see from Mr. Brown.

Peace, Love, and Potato Salad hits stores and shelves July 21, but in the meantime, he gave (614) a little taste of inventive ways to slice up the summer staple.

SUMMER HOLIDAYS POTATO SALAD

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Serves 6

For a Fourth of July party or a Labor Day picnic, what could be more perfect than this recipe with red, white, and blue potatoes? A fresh, colorful salad with a white wine vinaigrette is a modern approach to a summer favorite.

1½ lbs. mixed baby red-skinned, baby Yukon gold, and baby purple potatoes, halved
3 tbsp white wine vinegar, divided
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp sugar
½ cup olive oil
One 14 oz. can hearts of palm, well drained and sliced
½ cup jarred piquillo peppers  (or any roasted red peppers), drained and sliced

DIRECTIONS
1. Put potatoes in a pan and cover with cold water. Add 1 tablespoon of the white vinegar and 1 tablespoon of kosher salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until potatoes are tender, but not mushy. Drain well and cool.

2. For the dressing, whisk together remaining vinegar, Dijon mustard, sugar, and ½ teaspoon each of salt and black pepper. Drizzle in the olive oil, whisking until well blended.

3. To serve, place cooked potatoes in a shallow bowl. Top with hearts of palm and the piquillo peppers. Drizzle dressing over all.

Olive, Artichoke, & Feta Salad

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Serves 6

This recipe reminds me of a Greek salad, but with potatoes! It’s so hearty that it’s really a meal unto itself. Serve it at room temperature for the best flavor. Nothing else is needed except a loaf of crusty bread and maybe a nice glass of red wine.

2 lbs. new potatoes, halved or quartered
Sea salt
1 cup of your favorite bottled Caesar dressing (I like Cardini’s)
1 can quartered artichoke hearts, well drained
1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives, well drained
½ cup cubed or crumbled feta cheese
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1 tbsp za’atar (optional)
Black pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS
1. Cover potatoes with water in a large pot. Add salt and bring to a boil. Turn heat to simmer and cook until tender. Drain potatoes and add to a large bowl.

2.Pour Caesar dressing over the potatoes and toss gently.

3.Add artichoke hearts, olives, and feta to the bowl. Sprinkle in parsley, za’atar (if using), and pepper. Toss well.

4.Taste and adjust seasonings. Add more dressing if you prefer. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

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Travis Hoewischer

I've been working in journalism in central Ohio for more than a decade, and have been lucky enough to be a part of (614) Magazine since the very first issue. Proud to live in a city that still cares – and still reads.