(note, this is not an Egg-free recipe, but simply omit the egg to turn it into one, and consider replacing with potato).
Until I decided to sound more sophisticated, my Salad Nicoise was just a simple "Tuna Salad". However, a simple tuna salad it's not. Tuna salad can be anything ie. Tuna mixed in with any ingredients you constitute as salad.
But the authentic Salad Nicoise, hailing from the gorgeous French Riviera town of Nice, has two base ingredients: tuna and anchovies. After that, the recipe calls for lettuce, green beans, potatoes, tomato wedges, and boiled egg. It's a devine and healthy salad any GF or DF person can enjoy.
I've ordered it a few times at restaurants and each time, I seem to eat a different version!
So, a few years ago, when I was living in Italy, hungry faced with very little in the pantry besides tuna, I whipped up my own version which I still make to this day. It's really a complete meal - full of protein and greens with a little good fat to complete the meal. Teamed with fresh, hot crusty GF bread (see my post "The Bread Moment" for my recommendation), you can enjoy it for lunch or dinner and feel totally satisfied.
Using only the yummiest tuna (don't be boring and buy tuna in Brine - that's a waste of tuna if you ask me), it's healthy, gets the mouth-watering, and it's ridiculously quick and easy to make.
So, here is Anna's Salad Nicoise (Italian version) - if that makes any sense!?
One large can of Sirena Tuna, or any other tuna in olive oil (a good oil, rich in essential fatty acids!)
Two large handfuls of green beans, topped and tailed
One large or two small cloves of garlic
Handful cherry tomatoes
Two small eggs, hard boiled (omit if you are egg-free, replace for potatoes?)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Hard-boil the eggs. My favourite method is to cover both eggs in cold water, bring to the boil, lower the heat to a rolling boil for eight minutes, then drain and immediately rinse with cold water. Allow to cool.
Meanwhile, top and tail and wash the beans. Boil them in salted water until tender (usually until a fork is able to pierce through them).
Drain and allow to cool.
Wash then slice the cherry tomatoes in half or keep them whole, it depends how you prefer them.
Peel the garlic clove and cut into quarters.
Drain the tuna. Once cooled down, arrange the beans on a platter or dish, top with tomatoes and tuna, peeled eggs cut in quarters, and add garlic cloves. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Give a light toss. Add more or less oil and salt as desired.
I know it sounds weird that you'd drain the olive oil from the tuna then re-add your own, but I like the olive oil tuna because it's packed with flavour, however I then prefer to drizzle with my own olive oil because I love the freshness and flavour of a good quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Also, watch out for the garlic. Don't eat it unless you want your breath to reek for the rest of the day. It's really there to give flavour to the salad.
Finally, I don't use potatoes in this salad. I find it's filling enough without the need for extra carbs.
Now, where's that tuna? :)