Typically a composed salad, Niçoise also works as a toss-ahead option for people who live for texture in their salad bowl. With its wonderful plethora of healthy ingredients, Asparagus Niçoise with Pesto Dressing is a salad to look forward to all day long. For your protein, you could swap out the egg for chunks of high-quality canned tuna. Look for Peppadews in the deli section of grocers, but if unavailable you can use roasted red peppers.
Full steam ahead
Boil your eggs and you risk rubbery whites, chalky, green-tinged yolks, and clingy shells, giving you cooked eggs that look like they’ve been in the path of a meteor shower. Your hack for perfect hard-boiled eggs every time is to give the orbs a steam bath—yolks will remain creamy and sunnier than a Caribbean vacation, while shells will effortlessly slide off the just-set whites.
- 4 large organic eggs
- 1 lb baby “new” potatoes
- 1 inch bunch asparagus woody ends trimmed and cut into 2pieces
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 cup Peppadew peppers halved
- 1/3 cup halved Niçoise or Kalamata olives
- 1 Tbsp capers drained
- 1/4 cup prepared basil pesto
- 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- In medium saucepan, bring 1 inch water to a boil. Add steamer basket to pan and place eggs in basket in a single layer. In medium bowl, place ice cubes and water. Steam eggs for 15 minutes and then immediately transfer eggs into bowl filled with ice water. Let rest for 20 minutes. Gently break shells in a few places and then start peeling from the bottom end where there is an air pocket. Slice eggs in half.
- In large pot of cold water, place potatoes and then bring to a boil. Add 1 tsp salt to boiling water and boil potatoes for 10 to 15 minutes, just until potatoes are fork-tender.
- With slotted spoon, remove potatoes from pot and set aside in colander to drain. In medium bowl, place ice cubes and water. Add asparagus to pot and simmer until bright green and tender, about 3 minutes. Remove asparagus from water and immediately place in ice bath to stop the cooking. Drain well.
- Slice cooked and cooled potatoes in half. In large bowl, add sliced potatoes, eggs, asparagus, tomatoes, Peppadew peppers, olives, and capers; gently toss everything together. Stir together pesto and red wine vinegar. Toss with salad.
- Salad contents can be tossed together and kept chilled in airtight container for up to three days. Prepared eggs can be added to salad just before serving to ensure whites and yolks don’t separate during mixing. Eggs can be hard-cooked and chilled still in their shells for up to five days.
Per serving: 315 calories; 13 g protein; 14 g total fat (3 g sat. fat); 36 g total carbohydrates (11 g sugars, 8 g fiber); 427 mg sodium