Thursday, June 10, 2010

Recipe: Mark's Salad Nicoise

Mark's Salad Nicoise
(serves 2)

NOTE: Most Nicoise salads use green beans and egg. Those are fine additions to this salad, but they add time and the benefit is limited. This one is really about speed, ease, and the fresh herbs. If you can't get them, you may want to go with a more complex recipe.

Fresh from the garden romaine (one large head) or field greens (2 good handfuls).
1 can tuna in olive oil
1 can tuna in water.
6 ripe Campari tomatoes (or whatever is ripe and sweet).
1 can peeled new potatoes (I know, "CANNED?!?!?!" You can peel and boil fresh, if you like. I just found this to be tasty.
1halved and sliced cucumber
2 small handfuls Picholine olives
Salt and Pepper, to taste

For the dressing:

1T Dijon
Juice of 1/2-3/4 lemon
dash of salt and pepper
2-3T+ olive oil.
1T minced fresh Italian parsley
1T minced fresh chive
1-2t minced fresh tarragon.

In a small non-stick skillet, brown the potatoes in olive oil, salt and pepper. If you use fresh, you'll still want to peel, boil, then brown them, tossing occasionally.

While the potatoes are browning, wash and dry your greens.

For the dressing, in a large bowl, add the Dijon, salt, pepper, and lemon. Then, whisk in olive oil until the dressing is emulsified and taste. Keep adding oil until balance is right for your taste. The drier the lettuce, the less acidic you'll want your dressing. Add in the minced fresh herbs and stir. Reserve 1/2 of the dressing.

Toss greens in remaining dressing.

Plate the greens. Assemble the tuna, tomatoes, potatoes, cukes, and olives atop the lettuce. Drizzle the reserved dressing over the top. Salt and pepper the cukes and tomatoes. A squeeze of lemon over the tuna is optional, but tasty.

If you'd like to go really over the top, you may add a soft boiled egg to each.