The elegant Salad Niçoise, my all time favorite salad, encompasses all the bright tastes of the South of France in one bowl of freshness.
Start with, of course, the briney black olives ( I throw in plump firm green olives as well). Begin with a base of fresh summer lettuces, top with green beans par boiled to a perfect crispness, creamy baby Yukon Gold potatoes, bright tomatoes picked at the perfect moment of ripeness, tangy feta and succulent pan seared tuna or salmon filets. Serve with hard boiled eggs and a punchy lemon dijon vinaigrette.
For me- there is no better meal . Serve it up with a bold glass of Rose´and call me happy.
We have only a few precious weeks of summer left. Let’s raid the garden and enjoy this big, bold salad.
For the Dressing- prep time 5 minutes
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp Herbs de Provence
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 TBSP dijon mustard
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- For the Salad- prep time 30 minutes
8-9 cups fresh salad greens- frisée, red leaf , Bibb lettuce are preferred
8 oz baby Yukon Gold potatoes
4 oz fresh haricots verts, (french green beans) trimmed
1 cup pitted Niçoise olives
8 oz block of feta cheese, crumbled
1 cup campari tomatoes, sliced in half
2 large hard boiled eggs, quartered
1 lb salmon filet, with skin, remove pinbones- cut into 4 equal pieces.
1 lemon, cut into wedges for garnish
Method- Serves 4
- In a large pot filled with salted boiling water, cook the green beans until crisp tender (about 3-4 minutes). Plunge the beans into an ice bath to stop the cooking process. Drain on a clean kitchen towel. In the same pot, add in the potatoes and cook until tender about 10-12 minutes or until a fork inserted pierces the skin easily. Drain the potatoes, let cool and slice in half.
- Combine the garlic, salt, pepper, herbs, mustard, and lemon juice with an immersion blender. Pulse until combined. Slowly add in the olive oil until the dressing fully emmulsifies and becomes creamy. Set aside. A blender is preferred over a jar or whisk to completely emmulsify the vinegrette.
- Cut the fish into 4 equal peices. Brush each piece with 1 tsp of the lemon-dijon dressing.
In a large non stick pan, drizzle 1 teaspoon of oil. Cook the salmon, skin side down, until just crisp- about 4-5 minutes. Turn the salmon over and cook dressing side down another 3-4 minutes.
- To assemble: Place the salad greens on a large platter. Layer from left to right the feta, tomatoes, potatoes, haricots verts, olives and finally the eggs. Top with salmon and drizzle with Lemon- Dijon dressing. Serve with lemon wedges, if desired.