Monday, December 8, 2008

My "Big Salad" Nicoise

It's another Tasty Tuesday!! We are all so busy these days that sometimes it can be a real challenge to get a meal on the table. Especially one that's made with real food and can be prepared in a hurry. When life gets super hectic around here I like to make a "big salad" for dinner. Here's my version of a "big salad nicoise". As I'm quite casual in the kitchen, this recipe can easily be changed up in ingredients and amounts to suite your specific needs and what happens to be in season. If you don't like one of the ingredients that I've used here, by all means substitute something you like. You can even take this dish up a few notches and use fresh seared Ahi tuna. The "Big Salad Nicoise" pictured above easily fed 2 adults and a 16 year old son for dinner with no leftovers.

Salad Ingredients

1 small head romaine lettuce
1 small red bell pepper, sliced thin
1/2 English cucumber, diced
2 medium tomatoes, sliced
4 hard boiled eggs, quartered
fresh green beans, steamed
1 can artichoke hearts, drained
1 can tuna, drained
1/2 cup kalamata olives,
9 cocktail size boccaccini cheese balls
6 slices black Forest ham


1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and black pepper
1/2 small shallot, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp dijon mustard

Arrange salad ingredients onto a platter. Whisk together dressing ingredients and pour as much as is needed over salad. Store any leftover dressing in refrigerator. Enjoy with a nice glass of chilled white wine, and some good conversation.