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Salad Niçoise

Recipe for June 20, 2010

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This salad incorporates much of what is currently available at the market.  It was one of Julia Child’s all-time favorites.  Presented on a platter, it will please your family or guests any day of the summer week.

1 large head Boston-lettuce leaves*, washed and dried           
1 pound green beans, cooked and refreshed
1-1/2 tablespoons minced shallots
1/2 to 2/3 cup basic vinaigrette
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 or 4 ripe red tomatoes*, cut into wedges (or 10 to 12 cherry tomatoes*, halved)
3 or 4 "boiling" potatoes*, peeled, sliced, and cooked
Two 3-ounce cans chunk tuna, preferably oil-packed
6 hard-boiled eggs*, peeled and halved
1 freshly opened can of flat anchovy fillets
1/3 cup small black Niçoise-type olives
2 to 3 tablespoons capers
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley*

Arrange the lettuce leaves on a large platter or in a shallow bowl. Shortly before serving, toss the beans with the shallots, spoonfuls of vinaigrette, and salt and pepper. Baste the tomatoes with a spoonful of vinaigrette. Place the potatoes in the center of the platter and arrange a mound of beans at either end, with tomatoes and small mounds of tuna at strategic intervals. Ring the platter with halves of hard-boiled eggs, sunny side up, and curl an anchovy on top of each. Spoon more vinaigrette over all; scatter on olives, capers, and parsley. Serves 6.

From Julia's Kitchen Wisdom, by Julia Child.