How can you not love this salad? It’s not really a salad, it’s a complete meal. Of course, there are thousands of variations of Nicoise, and I don’t pretend mine to be the authentic one. But, it’s my take, and I loved every bite of it.
When summer rolls around, I crave something that is cold, yet hearty. But just the connotation of the word hearty to me is warm food. But I think this is the equivalent of that for summer. It really is a whole meal on a plate. My version is chock full of vine ripe “Raff” tomatoes, green beans, new potatoes, red onion, tuna, boiled egg, and chickpeas (yum!), topped with a parsley pesto vinaigrette. This combination is so satisfying and nourishing. I truly enjoy making and then gobbling up this “salad” with a nice piece of crusty bread. And really, it is quite easy to make. Yes, you have to boil ingredients separately, but if you prepare beforehand, it is simple.
So here’s what you’re going to need:
2 hard-boiled eggs
3 new potatoes
80 g string beans
1 can of tuna, oil packed, drained
1 small red onion, sliced
100 g chickpeas, boiled and cooled. (or from a can or jar)
1 tomato, sliced
For the parsley pesto vinaigrette:
1 large bunch Italian parsley
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
4 tbsp grated Parmiggiano Reggiano
1 tsp lemon juice
1/8 cup olive oil
juice from 1 lemon
Arrange all the ingredients for the salad however you want. I chose just for the picture to separate them, but it makes a really nice presentation if you have guests over. You can even bring it out to the table without dressing, and then add the parsley pesto.
In a blender, pulse the parsley, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, the garlic, salt and pine nuts until a fine paste. Then add the parmesan and lemon juice. Sprinkle about 2 tbsp of this over the veggies, and then dress with the rest of the olive oil and lemon juice. Toss to coat.
Reserve the rest of the pesto to use on bruschetta, fish, pasta, whatever your heart desires!
I hope you enjoy this meal as much as I do, and you can feel good, because its super duper healthy!
From my kitchen to yours,