In our household, entertaining is a MUST! We love offering our home and hearts to friends, family and business partners alike. That makes A LOT of weekends and weeknights busy and of course with tempting food around. Over the years, I have developed “Rita Alternatives” that work for my lifestyle, while not having to compromise flavour nor quality. Last weekend’s visit with my cousin Lisa, who also is an advocate for her health, had us making a deconstructed Nicoise Salad. The salad was a real hit, especially with my husband who is always brutally honest! We had all of the ingredients on the table, and everyone could pick and chose how much of each ingredient would make up their masterpiece. Double potatoes Dario???
It literally took 15 minutes to prepare- which is the perfect time frame to crack open a nice, chilled bottle of MATUA (White New Zealand Wine with fruity notes) which paired perfectly with our salad (named for its origin in NiceFrance).
If you entertaining (or not this weekend)- try it on for size! You can replace some of the ingredients if they don’t appeal to you. Oh, I would have definitely incorporated Anchovies next time!
Nonsense Nicoise Salad
- lettuce for bottom layer (I chose romaine but endive, Boston or another hearty lettuce will work- stay away from arugula or tender greens as they are more difficult to withhold the creamy dressing and heavy toppings)
- boiled baby parisian potatoes
- par-boiled yellow or green beans
- olives (we used Kalamata- alternately, you can use your favourite variety)
- chopped hard boiled eggs
- thinly sliced marinated artichoke hearts
- seared ahi tuna (or canned- I like the glass jar version from CALLIPO)
- creamy AVOMAYO dressing (below)
Creamy AVOMAYO Dressing
- 1/2- 1 whole (depending on size) ripe avocado
- 1 tablespoon of mustard of your choice (we used a truffle infused whole grain by Savvy Chef
- 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- drops of water to achieve desired consistency
Blend all ingredients in small blender or magic bullet. Serve.
Place all ingredients out on platters and let your guest assemble as they please!! Bon Apetit!