Niçoise Salad with Grilled Fresh Spiced Tuna and a Dijon Vinaigrette
Just the ultimate main course salad! A traditional French salad from Provence. Use classic ingredients, then tailor to your liking of ingredients.
A traditional Niçoise salad is composed with canned tuna - packed in oil, anchovies, hard boiled eggs, boiled potatoes, tomatoes, olives, lettuce and green beans.
My updated version adds to the above: golden beets, heirloom tomatoes, lola rosa lettuce, three kinds of potatoes, cucumbers, watermelon radish, red onion, olives, chives and dill. A flavorful dijon - lemon vinaigrette is a lovely drizzle over the salad which can be made a few days in advance.
Many components of the salad can be prepared a day ahead and tightly sealed in paper towel lined containers. Grill the tuna before serving, or purchase the best quality oil packed tuna in cans from Spain or Italy, and flake over the salad.
I do not want to confuse a classic salad ~ which by the way Julia Child is attributed to bringing to America. I am always visiting intriguing gourmet produce stores, and lately two to three farmers' markets per week. With so many veggies and herbs on hand, I tend to cook with a tremendous variety. So, asian chives and many herbs (growing in my garden now) end up nightly in my salads.
No real rules here! Use the textures and flavors you enjoy, and that work together.
After I tested the recipe, I put together two plates for my son and his friend substituting Grilled Chicken for the tuna, and adding any boys favorite ingredient: crispy crumbled bacon. Empty plates were returned to the sink!
I enjoy fresh Tuna, spiced and grilled, indoors or out with this salad. The best way to cook tuna is over high heat; just searing on both sides, with a raw interior. Sliced, the beautiful pink interior lends another layer of color to the salad.
TIP: Don't call it Salade Niçoise unless most of the key traditional ingredients are used.
Some salad ingredients
Nice served with Fresh Spiced Tuna
Dijon Lemon Vinaigrette