Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Classic Salade Nicoise

Classic Salad Nicoise

I'm a firm believer that Labor Day does not signify the end of summer. First of all, there are really only two seasons here in and less hot. Second of all, according to the calendar there are usually another two to three weeks of summer after Labor Day and this year, the summer is still going strong! However, although I don't believe in Labor Day being the end of summer, I do believe it is a great excuse to barbecue and hang out with friends and have a nice long weekend.  We had one of our legendary potlucks at JenFinn's house that weekend. I was stumped at what to make. People were bringing everything from barbacoa to fondue.  Jen was amused because she thinks I cook every day. Just so you know...I don't! I then remembered this salad that I've managed to make three times in the last couple of weeks. There's very little cooking involved besides hard boiling the eggs and blanching the lima beans. Speaking of lima beans, I'm newly obsessed with the beans that come from McGrath Family Farms here in Southern California. Unfortunately, I discovered them too late and haven't been able to get them in the last week or so. I can't wait until next season so I can take full advantage of the crop.  Also, some may find anchovies draped over the eggs strange...Don't knock it till you try it. The combo reminds me of one of my favorite tartine sandwiches from Le Pain Quotidien and it's really, really good.

Check out just some of the amazing things my friends made for our potluck. I'm so lucky to have such a talented group of chef-like friends!

Honey Wasabi Grilled Shrimp
Honey Wasabi Grilled Shrimp

Ponzu Grilled Corn
Ponzu Grilled Corn

Shrimp Ceviche

Classic Salad Nicoise
(Slightly adapted from David Lebovitz)

Makes 2 servings

2 large, ripe tomatoes
1-2 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
1 small cucumber, peeled and chopped
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup lima beans, blanched and cooled
1/3 cup small black olives (I used halved kalamata olives)
3-4 large handfuls baby romaine leaves
3 hard-cooked eggs, cut into wedges
6 tablespoons French vinaigrette (recipe below)
Freshly ground black pepper
3-4 anchovy filets, cut into thin strips lengthwise

Rub a large wooden or glass salad bowl with the garlic

Cut the tomatoes into wedges and sprinkle with salt. Place in a colander and let them drain for a few minutes.

Add the cucumber, onions, beans, and lettuce to the bowl. Add a bit of the dressing and toss to combine. Arrange the salad on plates. Top with the tomatoes and eggs. Top each egg wedge with an anchovy strip.

Printable Recipe

French Vinaigrette
(From David Lebovitz)

Makes about 1/4 cup of dressing

1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 small shallot, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped chives

In a bowl, mix together the salt, vinegar, shallot, mustard and oil. Season with pepper as needed. Just before serving, stir in the chives.

Printable Recipe

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Erica said...

What a great party- the food looks fantastic! I like the sounds of the salad...minus the little fishies ;) French type dressings are underrated! And I couldn't agree more- we have a least another month of summer :) :)

Pam said...

The food all looks delicious and I bet it was a fun time. I love lima beans and must add that the next time!

Banana Wonder said...

I've never made fresh lima beans before... well I better get to it before it's too late. I love your classic Salade Nicoise. Good stuff and good BBQ delights. Your summer lives on, no doubt.

Joanne said...

I say any excuse to have a barbecue is a good one! Especially when it's filled with this much good food! I really like salade nicoise and this sounds like a great preparation!

Kelly said...

We're firmly in opposite camps. I love fall so the sooner it comes, the better. I will also say the weather we've been having lately is all fall, crisp and lovely.

Diana said...

There is still another week of summer gosh darn it! And we are going to enjoy every second of it!

Rose, anyone? :)

Olga said...

I love the change in the background :)

vanillasugarblog said...

i know i say this all the time, but esi your hard boiled eggs come out so perfect, so yellow, so not green around the edges. show me when i come visit you.
and we here on the cape have two seasons too: humid & unbearable and freezing & snow.

Esi said...

Anna, get some limas at the market. The frozen ones are crap!

Kelly, I just said here in So Cal we don't have fall. I actually love a real fall and wish we had one.

Diana, I could use a VAT of rose right now. :)

Olga, me too! Thanks ;)

Dawn, is it freezing yet? I don't know what the egg trick is...bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover for 8-10 minutes and then peel. Easy peasy

lisa is cooking said...

Looks like a fabulous feast! And, salade nicoise is my favorite. I love anchovies with hard boiled eggs!

Unknown said...

That looks lovely. I have seen the recipe before but I never thought of making until I saw yours :D.

Anonymous said...

Looks positively beautiful and I hope you can share that awesome looking ceviche recipe!


M. said...

really awesome potluck!!!!

I've always loved Nicoise Salad, so many different goodies in it, and all so nutritious :)