Rose always thought she didn’t like Niçoise salad, until she ate this. Use the best quality tuna you can find. If tuna’s not your thing, use anchovies or sardines. If fish isn’t your thing, you could leave it out and instead add two more eggs, and use olive oil in place of tuna oil. This is also delicious with poached chicken breasts.
Salads & Sides
500g/1lb baby potatoes, scrubbed or peeled
4 eggs, at room temperature
250g/8oz green beans, trimmed and cut in half on a slight angle
2 small heads baby cos/romaine lettuce, base trimmed, leaves separated, washed and dried, larger leaves torn in half
1/2 telegraph cucumber, quartered and diced into 4cm/1½in pieces
400g/14oz oil-packed tuna, drained (reserve ¼ cup tuna oil for your dressing)
¼ cup oil from the tuna, or extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp olive brine
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup olives, crushed with the back of a knife to remove pits, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup parsley leaves
1/4 cup pickled onions, see method, or 1 spring onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp capers, drained
To make the pickled onions, thinly slice one red onion and place it in a jar with strained lemon or lime juice to cover.
Place in the fridge for pickle for at least two hours, or up to two days.
To prepare the dressing, place all the ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.
Place the potatoes in a large pot of salted water. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until just tender (8–10 minutes).
Remove the potatoes with a slotted spoon and set aside in a bowl to cool. (Don’t discard the water you boiled the potatoes in because you’re going to use it again.)
Fill a large bowl with cold water.
Bring the potato water up to a rapid boil, then use a spoon to gently lower the eggs into the water. Boil for 3 minutes, then add the beans and boil for a further 3 minutes.
Remove the beans and eggs from the pot with a slotted spoon and drop them into the bowl of cold water (this step halts the cooking process and keeps the beans crunchy). Allow to sit for 5 minutes to cool.
Once the beans have cooled, remove them from the cold water and add them to the potatoes. Pour over half of the dressing and gently mix to infuse the dressing.
Once the eggs are cool to touch, carefully peel them in the bowl of cold water (this makes it easier to remove the shells).
To assemble, place the lettuce leaves in a large serving bowl. Top with the bean and potato mixture and cucumber, then break the tuna into bite-sized pieces and scatter on top.
ut the eggs into halves over the bowl, ensuring any runny yolk goes into your salad (the eggs should be slightly soft and yolks jammy). Pour over the remaining dressing.
Garnish with olives, parsley, pickled onions and capers. Serve immediately.
The cook time for your potatoes will depend on how recently they have been dug, and the variety. To check if they are tender, insert a sharp knife or skewer into the centre of the potato – there should be no resistance.
You can prepare all the ingredients up to a day ahead and keep them in the fridge – just don’t add the dressing or cut into your eggs until you’re ready to serve.