Bearing its French elegance beautifully, vegan Niçoise salad is a composed dish that may look fancy, but is incredibly easy to make.
The traditional version is often made with tuna, but in this version, it’s replaced with baked tofu, which makes a great stand-in.
Its array of tasty ingredients—white beans or chickpeas, slender green beans, tomatoes, and olives—make it a splendid main dish salad for a spring or summer meal, either for busy weeknights or for company meals.
Served with fresh crusty bread, this makes a light one-dish meal for warm weather. But if you’d like to go a step further, here are a few meal suggestions:
- For an easy summer meal, serve with any combination of fresh corn on the cob, cold soup, or grilled vegetables.
- Pair this with a simple dish of sautéed potatoes.
- Serve with Pasta with Leafy Greens Pesto.
- 8 to 10 ounces fresh slender green beans, trimmed (see note)
- 1 large head Boston or Bibb lettuce, torn, or mixed baby greens
- Sliced fresh basil leaves or chopped fresh parsley as desired
- 8- to 10-ounce package baked tofu, diced
- 1 heaping cup grape or cherry tomatoes, or diced ripe tomatoes
- 15- to 16-ounce can cannellini beans or chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- Pitted green or black olives, or a combination
- Marinated artichoke hearts, optional
- Sliced red onion, optional
- Vinaigrette, homemade or bottled, as needed
- Steam the green beans just until bright green and tender-crisp. Err on the side of more less cooked rather than overcooked. Drain and rinse with cool water until they’re at room temperature.
- On a large serving platter or large shallow serving bowl, arrange the lettuce or greens. Scatter the basil or parsley over it.
- Arrange the green beans, tofu, tomatoes, beans or chickpeas, olives, and optional artichoke hearts in separated mounds over the lettuce or greens. Top everything with a few thinly sliced rings of red onion, if you’d like.
- Drizzle a little vinaigrette over the salad, then pass it around for everyone to dress their individual salads. Serve at once.
If fresh slender green beans are unavailable, use organic whole green beans, thawed and steamed just until tender-crisp.
There aren't too many brands of baked tofu, but what you'll find will be good! For this dish, I like
Soy Boy Tofu Lin or Smoked; or you can use White Wave baked tofu. The latter comes in 5.5-ounce packages so you may want to use two packages if you're feeding tofu fans.
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 233Total Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 655mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 9gProtein: 17g
Recipe adapted from Plant Power by Nava Atlas; photos by Hannah Kaminsky.
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