Friday, 6 September 2013

Niçoise Marron

No chestnuts in this one (best not ask). It's a salade niçoise  with a bit of spice, basically. You know by now that this blog doesn't do original - just adaptations - so what are you staring at? Away and make something tasty!

Serves 2
A handful of fine green beans
Eight smallish salad potatoes
A handful of green olives
Half a red onion, thinly sliced
A red chilli, deseeded and cut into slivers
A couple of handfuls of mixed sorrel, green frisée and lamb's lettuce, torn up
Four cherry tomatoes, quartered and deseeded
Two eggs
A lemon
Extra virgin rapeseed oil - one tablespoon
Olive oil - two tablespoons
Dijon mustard - half a teaspoon, maybe a little more
White wine vinegar, preferably infused with thyme and garlic - a tablespoon or slightly less, depending on how sharp you like your dressing, how sharp your vinegar is, whether it's got stuff floating in it (herbs and garlic 'soften' the vinegar a bit, earwigs make it more tart), etc, etc.
Garam masala - half a teaspoon should be plenty
A pinch or two of paprika
Fresh parsley, a handful, chopped
Salt and pepper

Put the onion and chilli into a small bowl and mix with the juice of half the lemon and the garam masala, then leave to marinate while you get on with the rest.
Cook the potatoes in salted water till just tender, and drain. Boil the eggs to somewhere between soft and hard (cold water, bring to the boil, then 5½ - 6 minutes at a simmer), and cool immediately. S
team the trimmed beans for three or four minutes then refresh in cold water.Wash and drain the leaves, pat the beans dry and cut into thirds, chop the parsley. Halve the eggs and cut each half into three. De-stone the olives if not already done, and quarter.
Make the dressing: into the two types of oil whisk the dijon mustard, white wine vinegar, the juice of the other lemon half, a pinch of salt and a grind of pepper.
Place the potatoes, halved if necessary, into a large bowl. Drain the onion and chilli and add them, together with the leaves, the parsley, the beans and the tomatoes. Pour in the dressing and toss well. Transfer everything to a salad bowl, lay the eggs on top, sprinkle paprika.
Serve with the grilled/fried/seared fish of your choice, or just some crusty bread.