aving spent about two-thirds of my life to date avoiding salade niçoise I'm taking a deep breath before wading into this subject. Thank you {% member.data['first-name'] %}.Your comment has been submitted. )In this country, then, as well as the objectionably odoriferous fish, a salade niçoise will always, always contain hard-boiled eggs, potatoes and French beans – and perhaps a couple of rubbery black olives. Peel and quarter the eggs and arrange on top, along with the olives, capers, anchovy strips and basil leaves. The panel unanimously prefers the salads, like Rowley Leigh's, which contain no leaves whatsoever – although I serve the Lebovitz salad immediately one taster describes it as "a little bit sad' in comparison with the robust crunchiness of its competitors.

Living in hot steamy central Florida, this is one of our year round staples. Drain both the beans and eggs; let eggs sit in a bowl under running cold water, and hold the beans in a sieve just under the tap for a moment, too, so that eggs and beans stop cooking and the beans get cold. Leftovers go into a spare hollowed out baguette for a “sandwich nicoise” the next day. 2. I'm afraid to say I went with a few cheaper ingredients as I'm on a budget but the end product was still satisfying. It is as contentious as the exact rules of pétanque or the, Gary Rhodes recipe salade niçoise - heavy on the tuna.

Photograph: Felicity Cloake, David Lebovitz recipe salade niçoise. I've never tried anchovies before so I thought I would put a couple in. Anchovies, artichoke hearts, lamb’s lettuce or lovage, radishes, pickled cucumbers…yes, and hard-boiled eggs… can all be added according to availability and whim – the point is that only crudités are used – everything is raw, the only thing cooked being the egg. It’s known as a composed salad; The ingredients are assembled on top of the lettuce instead of being tossed together with a dressing.

For the salad, heat an ovenproof frying pan until hot. However, flavourful tomatoes are hard to find in northern climes – she suggests using sunblush tomatoes. In order to give the fish a fair trial, I shell out for the priciest tinned tuna I can find (Ortiz, which, as well as passing muster on sustainability, I am gratified to later discover, also has a fan in Mr Hopkinson), and enlist a tasting panel of less biased niçoise fans.

In the cafes of the Alpes Maritime, however, the constituent parts are far more of a lottery – and tuna, in my happy experience, is definitely less popular than the diminutive anchovy. 3. Delia's dressing is too dominant: you don't need Dijon mustard if you have Provencale olives and anchovies (although Delia actually uses English mustard powder).

Are you passionate about potatoes, fanatical about French beans, or do you think a salade niçoise wouldn't dare step out on the Promenade des Anglais without its tuna? Because it is highly likely that this fisherman’s packed lunch is the origin of the Salade Niçoise. Lebovitz uses torn lettuce in his salad, as does Nigel Slater, while Delia says she now likes "to abandon [it] in favour of a few rocket leaves". To serve, whisk the remaining oil and vinegar with the lemon juice in a small bowl and toss in the lettuce wedges.

Many people really like the tuna-green bean-potato mix. I wouldn't have thought to do it, but it makes so much sense! I do exactly the same but add a few small new potatoes.

I like the crunch it adds – and the simple refreshment it provides in a dish which, for maximum enjoyment, should be saved for very hot days. In my defence, when I actually spent some time in Nice and its environs I realised my prejudice was entirely based on the British version of the dish, which regards tinned tuna (my bete noir) as a mandatory ingredient. It’s unacceptable to use both anchovy and tuna…it’s strictly either or (I think you can get away with using marinated anchovies!). With a chilled glass of good white wine this is a real pleasure. 3. Nicoise salad (pronounced nee-SWAZ) is a refreshing, colorful salad that comes from Nice, France.

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