Summer is almost over—but we’re still surrounded by much of its lovely produce. This classic salad recipe comes from my friend Connie MacDonald via her sister Amy. (Thank you, Connie and Amy!)
Connie’s instructions call for tossing the entire salad together. When I made it I had fewer people than it serves so I ended up plating all the ingredients separately and letting my guests help themselves. That way, the leftovers could be combined again the next day.
However you mix it, the salad gives you a lovely way to say farewell to summer’s bounty. And it gives me a delicious way to remember my late mother, who adored Salade Niçoise.
She always included a little hard-boiled egg in her Salade so I did so as well (as you can see in the photo of my version). It’s not obligatory, however!
for the salad:
8 small red potatoes
1-1/2 pounds French (or any good, fresh) green beans
1 cup Greek olives
1/2 red onion
1 pint cherry tomatoes
a couple of big handsful of Mesclun greens (3 to 4 cups)
about 1 pound tuna—canned, in packets, or fresh (if it’s fresh you should obviously quickly cook it before using it!)
for the Lemon Vinaigrette (more or less to your taste)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder (Tinky used 1 fresh garlic clove, minced)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Boil the potatoes. While they are cooking to al dente, steam green beans. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Dice the olives and onion. Set them aside separately.
Whisk together the vinaigrette.
Wash the tomatoes and the salad greens and set them aside. “By this point,” says Connie, “your counter top looks like an awesome Provençal cooking show with many bowls full of colorful veggies. You can practically feel your hair grow in anticipation of the impending nutritive boost.”
When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and let them cool until you can safely handle them. Slice them into 1/4-inch-thick slices and toss the warm potatoes with half of the vinaigrette. (I, Tinky, had the tiniest potatoes in the world so many of them didn’t need slicing.)
Find a really big bowl, toss and mix in all the ingredients, and cover them with the remaining vinaigrette. Toss gently, but thoroughly.
Turn the salad out onto a large platter and serve with fresh croissants.
“T.D.F. (to die for),” says Connie. The girl has a point. Serves 8 to 10 generously.
Finally … in case you’re not among those I have inundated with the links to my latest TV appearance, here they are! On Friday I made two dishes on the program “Mass Appeal” for World Alzheimer’s Month: Broccoli and Apple Salad and Apple Crumble.