This is surely the most famous and argued-over salad in the world. My idea for deconstructing my Salade Niçoise is to present all the elements separately. The purists say there shouldn't be any vegetables at all, but I am used to having green beans and potatoes in my version. Just tell yourself you are not from Nice, and go wherever your taste takes you.
A good handful of black olives (ideally French, from Nice is even better)
4 medium potatoes (boiled, cooled and sliced)
A good handful of green beans (lightly boiled or steamed)
½ red pepper (sliced)
½ yellow pepper (sliced)
For the Dressing:
4tblsp olive oil
1 garlic clove (crushed)
Fleur de sel
Freshly ground black pepper
I like having the potatoes because they soak up the vinaigrette and peppers are a must because they add fantastic crunch to the salad. This is a great recipe, because the main ingredient is the tuna.
Traditionally it comes in a tin, which makes it easy, but for this version I have turned it round and done it with fresh tuna. It gives a little bit of moisture and it isn't as salty as the stuff which comes from tins. I just briefly sear it in hot oil, so it stays red and soft and moist on the inside.
It's just slightly cooked on all sides and sliced through. The other ingredients are anchovies and olives to make beautiful colourful ingredients. Take them all separately and line them up on a board or platter, drizzle with dressing and present. Simple!