Veggie Niçoise Salad
EVENT: SUNDAY FUNDAY
THEME: EASTER SIDE DISHES
RECIPE: Veggie Niçoise Salad
Veggie Niçoise Salad is a spin on the traditional salad which has tuna. A filling, refreshing and colourful salad, one can enjoy is as a light meal or as a side. Take it along for picnics or garden parties.
Vegetarian Vs Ovo Vegetarian
Before I have die hard vegetarians up in arms, let me clarify that Vegetarian in the Western World is a bit different from India. In India vegetarian would mean no eggs also. However, in some places in the West, fish and eggs are a part of the Vegetarian diet. But, I follow the ovo vegetarian diet which means that though I don’t consume meat or fish, eggs is fine.
My Version Of Niçoise Salad
In this Veggie Niçoise Salad I have replaced tuna with beans making it a protein rich salad along with the boiled eggs. Every time we went to some fancy restaurant, my hubby would enjoy a hearty Niçoise Salad with tuna while mine would be a simple Garden Salad that would have endless number of lettuce leaves.
Now I can make that colourful, spring feeling, healthy, filling salad at home with ingredients of my choice.
Sunday Funday is a group of Food Bloggers. Every Sunday we share some fun, traditional, hearty or easy recipes to make Sunday Family Meals a bit more exciting. To join this fun group, visit the Sunday Funday Facebook Page. Request to join in.
THEME: EASTER SIDE DISHES
Wendy who blogs at A Day In The Life On The Farm suggested we share dishes that we would serve as side dishes for Easter. Truthfully, have not attended or organised an Easter Party. Having said that whatever kind of dinner or lunch party it is one thing is for sure that salads are always there as a side dish.
Thinking of how to use eggs to prepare a dish, I recalled the Niçoise Salad hubby had a few months back. A trip to the market offered fresh green beans. Both were the deciding factor for making this salad. In fact, I cannot stress enough that it is paramount to use fresh tender green beans for this salad.
Easter Side Dishes By Fellow Members Of Sunday Funday
- Bunny Cupcakes from Amy’s Cooking Adventures
- Feta and Strawberry Tabouli Salad from Food Lust People Love
- Fresh Pea Hummus from Culinary Cam
- Pineapple Bread Pudding from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Pork Sorpatel – East Indian from Sneha’s Recipe
- Potato Salad with Condensed Milk from Palatable Pastime
- Stir-Fried Balsamic and Ginger Glazed Carrots from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Veggie Niçoise Salad from Mayuri’s Jikoni
- Whole Wheat Rosemary Garlic Bread Recipe from The Mad Scientist’s Kitchen
Some Egg Recipes On My Blog
WHAT IS A NICOISE SALAD?
Pronounced as “neeswaz”, this French Salad basically has tuna, green beans, eggs, potatoes,tomatoes and olives with a vinaigrette dressing. These days there are so many variations, where sometimes tuna is replaced with meat. Anchovies are added. Total vegetarian versions are made using plant based proteins to replace the tuna and eggs with sietan, tofu, beans or cheese.
Ingredients Required For Veggie Niçoise Salad
Boiled eggs are usually used. Hard boiled, semi soft, the choice is yours. To peel the shells off perfectly, placed boiled eggs in cold water for 5 minutes. Add ice cubes if necessary. Also when you boil eggs, don’t boil water to a rolling point. Simmering is the best.
Choose slender tender green beans. Snap off the woody stem. Wash and add them to boiling water. Blanch for 2-3 minutes. Immediately remove the beans from the hot water using a slotted spoon and plunge them in cold water with ice cubes in it. Leave for 5 minutes and remove from the water.
Use yellow or red potatoes. They should be the sticky kind. I have used baby potatoes. You may use normal boiled potatoes and then cut them into chunks. As an alternative you can either roast the potatoes or grill them.
Can add English ro Persian Cucumber, sliced or cubed. Also can add radish or carrots if you want to. I have used cucumber.
I have baby tomatoes. Use any kind that you have. If you don’t have baby tomatoes, then use normal roma tomatoes cut into chunks.
Adds that briny taste. One can use capers, or any pickled vegetables. I am not a big fan of those so added just olives which I love. Add green, black or kalamata olives. Or go for a mixture.
You can add them or omit them, up to you. I added spinach leaves as hubby and I had the salad as a meal. Add any salad leaves of your choice. Lettuce, arugula, mixed, etc.
Use any you have at hand. I had some fresh dill and it added such a refreshing taste. Can use mint, basil, oregano.
Extra Plant Based Protein
Beans, quinoa, lentils, tofu, cheese like feta or any hard cheese. If you are a fan of seitan, then add that.
Use homemade or ready made vinaigrette. I like to make mine at home as that allows me to control the vinegar I add.
For the Lemon Vinaigrette you will need
- Lemon Juice – best to use fresh lemon juice and not the bottled one.
- Lemon Zest – optional. But I just love the fragrance so tend to add it to whatever I can.
- Olive Oil – or any other salad oil.
- Crushed Mustard or Dijon mustard – I like using coarsely crushed mustard seeds. Feel free to use Dijon Mustard.
- Salt – use normal salt or any of your choice. I have used Himalayan Rock Salt.
- Pepper – black pepper powder, add according to your taste.
- Honey/ Maple Syrup – use either honey or maple syrup. I have used maple syrup as that is what I have in my pantry.
Veggie Niçoise Salad
FOR THE SALAD:
- 3-4 eggs boiled
- 100 g green beans or a handful
- 1 cup red/white beans cooked
- 1 cup cucumber slices
- 2 cups baby potatoes boiled in salted water
- ¼ cup olives
- 1 cup baby tomatoes
- 1-2 sprigs fresh herbs
- handful salad leaves/baby spinach optional
FOR THE LEMON VINAIGRETTE:
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 tsp coarsely crushed mustard or dijon mustard
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp balck pepper powder
- 1 tbsp honey/maple syrup optional
- PREPARATION OF VEGGIE NICOISE SALAD
- Boil the eggs in simmering water the way you want them, hard or semi soft.
- Peel and cut them into halves.
- Boil the potatoes in salted water till done.
- As I used baby potatoes I did not peel them.
- Cut the potatoes into halves.
- Add Green Beans/French Beans to boiling water. Blanch for 2-3 minutes.
- Remove the beans with slotted spoon or strainer. Immediately add them to ice cold water. After 5 minutes remove the beans from the water.
- Leaves the baby tomatoes whole or cut them into halves. If you are using normal tomatoes then cut them into chunks.
- Cut the cucumber into slices or thick quarters.
- Layer a plate with the salad leaves or spinach.
- Arrange the boiled eggs, green beans, red/white beans, olives, tomatoes, potatoes, cucumber over the leaves.
- Add fresh herbs.
PREPARATION OF LEMON VINAIGRETTE
- Add all the vinaigrette ingredients in a bowl and whisk to blend.
- I like to add the ingredients in a jar with an airtight lid. Close the jar properly and give it a good shake. So much easier than whisking it.
- Add vegetables like radish, carrots if you want for that extra crunch.
- Add pickled vegetables like capers, artichoke hearts, gherkins, etc.
- Use salad leaves of your choice.
- Add extra protein of your choice. Some recommendations are quinoa, feta, hard cheese, lentils. Go ahead and add meat, tuna, anchovies for that traditional salad.
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