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Classic Recipe For Seared Tuna Nicoise Salad

Summer of Salads: Nicoise Salad

Since PartySugar and I have been infatuated with salads this Summer, I thought it would be appropriate to pay homage to the French national holiday today with a specialty native to the Côte D'Azur region of France.

Salade Nicoise, or Nicoise salad, originated in the town of Nice, and is made with boiled new potatoes, steamed haricots verts (baby green beans), boiled eggs, local olives, cured anchovies, and tomatoes, tossed in a Dijon mustard vinaigrette and topped with tuna. I selected a recipe that uses some classic ingredients, but also incorporates a few unconventional flourishes — like seared tuna and caperberries — for a current twist.

It's extremely important to note that the tuna should be removed from the pan immediately after searing — I left it in the pan after turning off the stove, and latent heat nearly cooked the tuna through. Bring a bite of French countryside to your kitchen when you read more.

Salade Niçoise

Salade Niçoise

Tyler Florence Recipe For Seared Tuna Nicoise Salad

Ingredients

Vinaigrette:
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salad:
1 pound small red new potatoes, scrubbed and halved
8 large eggs
1/2 pound haricots verts or French green beans, stems trimmed
2 pounds fresh sushi-quality tuna
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pint teardrop or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup nicoise olives
16 anchovy fillets
16 caperberries with stems
1/2 bunch fresh chives, snipped in half

Directions

  1. Make the vinaigrette: Combine all ingredients in a mason jar. Screw the cap on the jar and shake the vinaigrette vigorously to emulsify. Set the dressing aside while preparing the salad so the flavors can marry.
  2. Cooking the potatoes, eggs, and green beans in the same pot cuts down on prep time and clean up. To do this, put the potatoes in a large saucepan, add water to cover and a nice pinch of salt; bring to a boil over medium heat. Simmer the potatoes for 12 minutes to give them a head start, and then add the eggs. Place a steamer basket or colander on top of the simmering water. Put the green beans in the steamer and cover with a lid. Steam the beans for 5 minutes until crisp-tender while continuing to cook the potatoes until fork tender. Drain out the water and put the potatoes, eggs, and green beans in a colander; rinse briefly under cold water. Peel the shells off the eggs and cut them in half lengthwise.
  3. Sear tuna: Place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Rub the tuna on all sides with olive oil, and a bit of the vinaigrette; season with a fair amount of salt and pepper. Lay the tuna in the hot pan and sear for approximately 2 minutes on each side; as the tuna cooks, the red meat will become whiter. Immediately transfer the tuna to a cutting board and slice them against the grain.
  4. Assemble the salad: Combine the potatoes, green beans, tomatoes, olives, anchovies, capers, and chives in a large mixing bowl. Take the vinaigrette and give it another good shake to recombine. Drizzle the salad with enough vinaigrette to fully moisten and toss gently to coat; season with salt and pepper. Take care not to mush up the ingredients - the important thing about salade Niçoise is that it is arranged nicely on a platter with all the elements keeping their individual integrity. Put the tossed salad down the center of a serving platter and lay the seared tuna attractively across the top and the eggs around the rim. Drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette and serve.

Serves 8.


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Join The Conversation
jamie-ferrari jamie-ferrari 3 years
I love Nicoise, but haven't had one in years. Looking forward to trying your recipe. Perfect time of years as we have several of vegetables and spices growing in our container gardens this year. Thanks for the recipe. xox
Lady-Amalthea Lady-Amalthea 5 years
Yum! Nicoise Salad is one of my favorites; I make a vegetarian version with tofu instead of tuna. Almost as good!
Giasbash6260 Giasbash6260 6 years
HANDS DOWN BEST SALAD IN THE WORLD! I add artichoke hearts and subtract the potatoes!
nancita nancita 6 years
I absolutely adore nicoise salads and this looks like a delicious version. Thanks!
yvettecq yvettecq 6 years
Nicoise salade has to be my favorite! Had one on the evening of 7/13 (pre-Bastille day) and for lunch on 7/14, just for good measure! ;-)
bellaressa bellaressa 6 years
This sounds so good, I think I am going to try it this weekend. Thanks!
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 6 years
This is one of my all-time faves, too. I wish more restaurants would serve it!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 6 years
Love this salad, especially with a glass of wine.
kurniakasih kurniakasih 6 years
Thanks for reminding me, this is one of my fave salad too, it's been a long time since I enjoy it. The next time hubby brought fish home (soon enough hopefully), we're making this. :)
CoconutPie CoconutPie 6 years
Salade Niçoise is one of my favorite salads but I always forget to make it. Thanks for reminding me! Yours looks amazing by the way!
cg130 cg130 6 years
Salade nicoise is a big fav of mine!
CiaoBella2 CiaoBella2 6 years
Nicoise Salad is one of my favorite salads. Happy Bastille Day!
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