Bastille Day is celebrated on July 14th in France, and commemorates the storming of the Bastille in 1789 and the beginning of the French Revolution. Although it may not mean much to those who live elsewhere or aren’t French, it’s the perfect excuse plan a picnic (as the French generally do), or at least prepare a good French dish or two. The following easy Salad Niçoise is great for a picnic or any alfresco dining, and it’s quick and easy to put together.
Salad Niçoise (ni-swaz), originated in Nice, and has evolved over the years as ingredients were added and changed. It was first made popular in America by Julia Child. One of the luscious components of Salad Niçoise is French Potato Salad, which is also a good picnic dish on its own. It can be made ahead, so that when it’s time to assemble the Salad Niçoise, everything is ready.
Julia’s classic recipe calls for blanched petit green beans (haricot vert), tomatoes, kalamata olives, canned tuna, Boston lettuce, hard-boiled eggs (which can also be cooked and chilled ahead), anchovies, and finely chopped herbs (your choice). Of course you can add your own ingredients, like leftover cooked or raw vegetables, and use fresh grilled tuna instead of the canned. This recipe adds red and yellow pepper strips for color. Make sure you accompany this delicious full meal salad with crusty French bread.
1 head Boston lettuce
2 cups haricot vert (petite green beans), blanched in salted boiling water for 1 minute, then rinsed with cold w
3 tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 cups French Potato Salad
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
2 6 oz. cans tuna packed in olive oil
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted
3 hard boiled eggs, shelled and cut into wedges
6 to 8 anchovy fillets, (optional)
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon French-made Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Arrange the lettuce on a large platter.
- Decoratively arrange the remaining ingredients on the lettuce.
- Drizzle with the vinaigrette (there will be some leftover – use on a tossed salad).
- Serve immediately.
- Vinaigrette: Whisk all ingredients together, or whizz in the blender.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 399 Calories from Fat 255
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 64% Protein 17% Carb. 17%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 28 g
Saturated Fat 4 g
Cholesterol 87 mg
Sodium 670 mg
Total Carbohydrate 17 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 17 g
Vitamin A 36% Vitamin C 88% Calcium 0% Iron 10%