Salade Niçoise

This is one of those classic recipes that curiously call for tuna out of a can, all of which are immeasurably improved by the substitution of fresh grilled tuna. Also note that a salad without anchovies is not a salade Niçoise.

For six as a first course:

  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon musdard
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 pound fresh tuna steak
  • 1 pound green beans
  • 1/2 pound small new potatoes
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 pound small Roma or cherry tomatoes
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 1/2 cup minced basil
  • 1/4 cup minced oregano
  • 1 head Boston lettuce
  • 1/2 cup Nicoise olives
  • 1/4 cup small capers
  • 2 ounces flat filets of anchovy

Mince the garlic. In an small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Continue whisking while adding the olive oil in a thin stream to produce a creamy vinaigrette.

Coat the tuna with two tablespoons of the vinaigrette. Sear on both sides over hot charcoal and slice thin.

Trim the green beans, boil until just tender, and refresh under cold running water. Boil the potatoes until barely soft and slice. Hard-boil the eggs. Mince the scallions. Slice or halve the Roma or cherry tomatoes, respectively.

Toss the lettuce (using only the soft leaves) with two tablespoons of the vinaigrette amd spread on a large platter. Toss the tuna, green beans, potatoes, tomatoes, scallions, basil, and oregano with the remaining vinaigrette and arrange over the lettuce. Cover with the olives, capers, and anchovies. Quarter the eggs (longitudinally) and arrange along the perimeter of the salad.