Peruvian Potato Salad With Huancaina Sauce

From Steven Raichlen’s Project Fire comes this unique potato salad recipe. In place of the traditional mayonnaise-based dressing, you use a creamy piquant cheese sauce spiked with spicy Peruvian chiles to make this Papas Huancaina. Huancaina sauce is named for a Peruvian city in the Andean highlands, and is one of the wonders of Peruvian cuisine. This sauce also tastes great on grilled chicken and seafood, so feel free to experiment as necessary.


  • 2 lbs baby fingerling potatoes
  • 2 scallions, trimmed, white parts cut crosswire into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • --
  • Huancaina sauce:
  • 6 ounces of queso blanco
  • 1 bottled Peruvian yellow chile
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup evaporated milk
  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • Coarse salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Set grill to 400°F.
  2. Cut any large potatoes in half or thirds so all the potatoes are the same size. Place the potatoes and scallion whites in a baking dish or disposable aluminum foil pan large enough to hold them in a single layer.
  3. Place the pan with the potatoes in the center of the grill. Close the lid and smoke-roast the potatoes until tender, for about 40-60 minutes.
  4. Begin preparing your Huancaina sauce by placing all of your ingredients for the sauce into a food processor. Puree until smooth. Add salt or lemon juice to taste.
  5. Once the potatoes are tender, place in a mixing bowl and stir in the Huancaina sauce.
  6. Sprinkle with the chopped scallion greens and serve.

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