Salad Nicoise

Salad Nicoise

  • Servings: 2
  • Rating:


3 good-sized waxy potatoes, or several handfuls small new potatoes
3 eggs
~12 spears asparagus, tough ends snapped off
several handfuls butter lettuce, washed and dried
handful olives
~6 anchovies
a few radishes, thinly sliced

1 minced shallot, or 1 clove garlic, pressed
1 tablespoon vinegar, preferably a mild one, like sherry
 juice of 1/2 lemon (optional — you can add another splash vinegar instead)
~3 tablespoons olive oil
hefty dollop mustard
pinch sugar
pinch salt
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh herbs — tarragon is especially nice

crusty bread and cheese, to round out the meal


Place the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with salted water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat until it's just high enough to maintain a simmer, and cook until the potatoes are tender but not mushy (~10-20 minutes, depending upon the size of your potatoes). Remove the potatoes with a slotted spoon (leaving the water in the pot), and let cool slightly.

While the potatoes are cooking, hard-boil the eggs: Place in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover with a lid and turn off the heat. Let sit in the hot water for 10 minutes, then drain and cover with cold water too cool off.

When the potatoes are done, bring the pot of water back to a boil, and add the asparagus. Let cook just a minute or two, until bright green, then remove, drain, and shock with cold water.

To make the dressing: place the shallot or garlic, vinegar, and lemon juice in a small jar with a tight-fitting lid (canning jars work wonderfully). Let sit for a minute or two to mellow, then add the remaining ingredients. Shake until emulsified, then taste and adjust as needed.

To assemble the salad: Cut the potatoes into thick slices (or just halve them if they're new potatoes), and peel and halve the eggs. Lay the lettuce down on a serving platter, then top with all of the elements, each given its own neat little section of the platter. Give the dressing another good shake, then pour over the salad (the warm potatoes will do an especially good job of drinking it in), and season with salt and pepper as needed. Serve, ideally on a warm summer evening, with some crusty bread and cheese.