Island-Style Potato Salad with Capers & Sea Fennel

Potato salad, enriched with various local herbs and pickles, is a staple dish on the Cycladic islands.

Chef: Maria Tiniakou

Preparation & Cooking time: 1 hour & 5 minutes

Serves: 4-6

We often refer to edible products as the ultimate souvenirs to bring home from Greece. Ouzo and Greek coffee are popular choices, as are olive oil and olives, honey, mountain tea, trahana, and sesame snaps. Less famous but equally good choices are the many locally produced types of pickles – often made from plants that grow wild along the shore, in the fields, and on the mountains. Full of impressive flavor, they make wonderful additions to salads, bruschetta, fish, and pasta dishes.

On the island of Andros, potato salad is a staple on the table. This simple recipe from local cook Maria Tiniakou is made with herbs and three types of pickles: capers, sea fennel, and a wild green that goes by many names – often alivarvaro (Centaurea raphanina mixta). You can limit yours to the ones you manage to pick up on your trip to Greece.


Start by adding the potatoes to a pot, and covering them with slightly salted water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and cook for about 45 minutes, until done.

Strain the potatoes and rinse them in cold water to cool.


Cut your potatoes in half, and place them in a bowl with the remaining ingredients. Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Mix well, and serve.


Originally published in Greek in









This recipe was previously published in Greek at


500 g baby potatoes, with peel, washed

1 onion, finely chopped


3 spring onions, finely chopped

2 tbsp pickled capers, soaked in water (to remove saltiness) and strained

2 tbsp pickled sea fennel, soaked in water (to remove saltiness) and strained

200 g pickled alivarvaro, or other pickled greens

1 tbsp vinegar

the leaves from 2 sprigs of fresh (or 1 tsp. dry) marjoram

salt and freshly ground pepper

60 ml olive oil

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