This dish is a family favorite in those steamy summer months of ripe tomatoes and hot days which lead to evenings that feel too warm for a big heavy meal. This salad is composed of several vegetables cooked until just barely done, bathed in a simple EVOL vinaigrette and topped with oil packed tuna. Fresh, satisfying and very healthy in that trendy Mediterranean way I keep reading about. This salad is my daughter’s favorite from her teen years; she is 30; I have been making it for decades! My mother loved it too. My guy enjoys it as well. I don’t make it except in summer as the fresh produce is critical to the flavor especially the tomatoes.
First, you start with fresh ripe summer tomatoes, crisp bell peppers, tender zucchini and high-quality small potatoes, preferably red organic ones and the oil packed tuna of your choice. Do not make it with water canned pallid tuna, a total waste of time in my opinion. You can lay it on a bed of romaine leaves or leave off the lettuce, great either way. I use fancy olives sometimes, but inexpensive small canned pitted ones work really well. Please do make the homemade vinaigrette; it is very simple and very effective in creating the perfect flavor of the salad. If you hate one of the ingredients; leave it out. I do want to mention that many recipes use wedges of hard boiled eggs but my version doesn’t usually have that. Feel free to add them in!
Angie’s Salad Nicose
2 lbs of small red potatoes
2 medium peppers; one red, one green, cut into vertical strips and halved across the middle.
1 medium zucchini sliced in 1/2 inch half rounds
1/2-2/3 lb fresh green beans, tips removed, if long cut in half
2/3 of a 14 oz can of small pitted olives, drained
1 large ripe tomato cut into chunks
2 cans oil packed tuna fillet
I used one of those good Seasons vinaigrette jars to mix my dressing in; I know….terribly old fashioned but they do work well!
Fill jar with red wine vinegar to the water line (second line from bottom) (abut 1/4 cup)
Fill rest of way to oil line with EVOL (I often do half EVOL and half mild olive oil) (bout 2/3 cup)
Then add the following:
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp. French Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt; rounded
ground black pepper to taste – cap it and mix it up well
Put the potatoes in a saucepan, cover with water and boil on high until just tender. Whie, they cook chop the individual veggies. Steam each kind individually in a pot with 1/2-inch water until just tender (3-5 min) Taste one to be sure., do not overcook them! Carefully drain each cooked veggie and dump gently into a big bowl. On top of each other. Make the vinaigrette as you do the cooking so it can stand 5-10 minutes. When the potatoes are done drain them and set on your cutting board to cool; not touching each other. Peel them and slice thickly. If they are oval, I sometimes just cut into two thin halves, cutting along the long side. Put them in the bowl you will serve the salad in. When all hot potatoes are peeled pour 1/3 of the vinaigrette over them and carefully turn with a big spoon to coat well. They should still be quite warm when you do this step. The dressing soaks into the warm potatoes; doing it warm is very important to the flavor. Put the cooked and drained veggies in there on top. Add the tomato chunks, tuna and olives. add another third of dressing and gently turn the salad to mix well. Adjust the salt/pepper and dressing amount. Serve on a plate or shallow bowl on a bed of torn up crisp romaine leaves. Enjoy!