Salads and vinaigrettes is my weakest point . I never seem to find the balance of flavors . So when the IHCC released their theme for this week as salads and salad dressings I wondered what to try. One of my favorite salads is salad Nicoise, even if I dont get the dressing balanced , I still love the hearty salad which is a meal by it self.
In this Jacques Pepin recipe fresh tuna is used , something which is easily available here in Maldives. I made a two person portion or one if you are really hungry. This meant I had to cut down the dressing. I have to say I am not happy with the dressing result as I ended up adding too much dijon mustard so it ended up having a really strong mustardy taste. So any tips on getting my salad dressing balanced......
So if you do try this taste and taste the dressing and get it balanced and check the original Jacques Pepin dressing as well from the link below.
Recipe : Salad Nicoise using fresh tuna recipe slightly adapted from Jacques Pepin's recipe .
2 medium potatoes , peeled , cut into bite size cubes and boiled till cooked through, drained.
1/4 tsp dijon mustard ( i would recommend this much even though I ended up with more than this)
1-2 fat cloves of garlic, finely grated
2 tsp white grape vinegar
7 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp water ( a trick from gordon ramsay recipe to thin down the dressing)
and generous pinch of pepper
8-10 green beans, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces, blanched
1 large tomato, halved, seeds removed and cut into bite sizes
1/2 a small onion, sliced
8-10 black olives pitted
handful of lettuce leaves
handful basil( if available)
150 g-200g fresh tuna fillet, cubed.
1 tsp black pepper
Make the dressing by whisking olive oil, dijon ( if unavailable use the american one thats more easily available in shops) , garlic, vinegar and olive oil. Once its emulsified add a the tablespoon of water , season with salt and pepper. ( TASTE TASTE TASTE)
In to the warm potatoes, add half the dressing on the potatoes and toss well. Set a side.
Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil or regular vegetable oil in a frying pan . Season your tuna with salt and a teaspoon of pepper and add to the pan , toss around till the out side is caramelized and inside cooked through( I hate raw fish, sorry, it was supposed to be raw in the original one).
Remove and set aside.
To assemble the salad, arrange the lettuce on the plate. Toss the beans, onions , tomatoes and olives with another tablespoon of dressing and then mix in with the potatoes. Then arrange this over lettuce leaves. Then add the tuna on top. Drizzle more dressing on top with a spoon.
Serve as soon as possible.
Serving this up at this week's IHCC theme Salades et Vinaigrettes ....