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Niçoise Salad | Marc Forgione

Ingredients
Tuna Steaks
  • 4 x 150g tuna steaks (ask your fishmonger to cut you 5cm x 5cm centre-cut fillets)
  • 4 tbsp olive tapenade 
  • ½ cup chopped fresh curly parsley
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh chives
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh chervil
  • extra virgin olive oil rapeseed/canola oil

 

Wax Bean Salad
  • 1 cup yellow wax beans
  • 1 cup haricots verts or green beans
  • ¼ cup pickled red onion 
  • 3 tbsp minced preserved lemon
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh curly parsley
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp piment d’espelette or hot paprika
  • kosher/flaky salt

 

Silver Dollar Potatoes
  • 3 large Yukon Gold potatoes 
  • 225g clarified butter or melted unsalted butter

 

To Serve
  • 4 oil-cured white anchovy fillets, halved lengthwise
  • 4 tbsp olive tapenade
  • upland cress (optional)
  • flaky sea salt, such as Maldon
  • 12 baby radishes
Josh’s Notes

Preparation: Make the tapenade, pickled red onion, and preserved lemons in advance.
Key element: Extremely fresh tuna, and precise cooking time.
Comment: This is a complex dish, but the reward is superb flavour combinations.

Complexity: Difficult
Prep Time: 1 Hour
Cook Time: 1 hour and 30 minutes
Serves: 4

Method
Tuna Steaks

Rinse the fish and pat it dry. Make a 0.5cm slit in the centre of each tuna fillet and stuff about one tablespoon of olive tapenade into each cavity. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the parsley, chives, tarragon, and chervil. Brush the tuna with olive oil and coat it in the herb mixture on both sides. Set aside.

 

When ready to serve, add enough rapeseed/canola oil to a large frying pan to cover the bottom of the pan and set it over a high heat. Just before the oil starts to smoke, add the tuna and sear for 20 seconds on each side. Transfer to a tray lined with parchment paper.

Wax Bean Salad

Trim the wax beans and haricots verts, and bring a pot of salted water to the boil. Set up a bowl of iced water. Blanch the beans in the boiling water for one minute and immediately transfer to the ice bath. Let cool to room temperature.

 

Cut the beans in half lengthwise and toss with the pickled red onions, preserved Meyer lemon, and parsley. In a small bowl, stir together the olive oil, lemon juice, and piment d’espelette. Drizzle the dressing over the vegetables and toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and set aside.

Silver Dollar Potatoes

Pre-heat the oven to 200°C; position the rack in the middle. Cut the potatoes in half widthwise, and use a 5cm ring mould to punch out uniform cylinders; you should wind up with six cylinders. Using an adjustable mandoline, slice the cylinders into slices 3 mm thick.

 

Bring a pot of salted water to the boil. Blanch the potato slices in the boiling water for one minute, then transfer to a baking tray and brush generously with clarified butter. Line six 115g ramekins with foil and fill each ramekin with potato slices.

 

Pour in enough of the clarified butter to come to 5mm from the top of each ramekin. Bake the potatoes for about one hour, or until the edges are crispy. Turn the potatoes out of the ramekins and set aside. Reserve any remaining clarified butter for another use.

Assemble The Dish

Divide the wax bean salad between four plates, and scatter the silver dollar potatoes around. Slice the tuna steaks and place them on top of the bean salad. Top with the halved anchovies. Drizzle some of the bean salad dressing from the bottom of the bowl around the plate, dot with bits of olive tapenade, and finish with some upland cress, if using, and flaky sea salt. Serve with the radishes.

Make It Faster

Instead of making the silver dollar potatoes, go a bit more of a traditional route—boil some fingerling potatoes in salted water and serve alongside the salad.

The Recipe, Josh Emett with photography by Kieran E. Scott $49.99

Marc Forgione’s Niçoise Salad (Salade Niçoise) from The Recipe by Josh Emett, image copyright © Kieran E. Scott, design copyright © Blackwell and Ruth Ltd, 2019. | Niçoise Salad (Salade Niçoise) recipe from Marc Forgione: Recipes and Stores from the Acclaimed Chef and Restaurant by Marc Forgione (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2014). All rights reserved.