The rest of this recipe includes the usual nicoise ingredients: green beans, baby potatoes, hard boiled egg…and in my version, capers instead of olives. This is purely because I hate olives, and I’m sure I am breaking many many nicoise rules by leaving out the olives (for all I know, nicoise actually MEANS olive) and if you are an olive lover you should feel totally empowered to use olives instead of capers.
And then there is the pasta. I used a nice short curly pasta, but any short pasta (ziti, penne, etc) will work just fine. You’ll make a lovely sauce out of the tuna oil and some mustard and vinegar and toss it all up with a little pasta water and the nicoise ingredients, and it will be light and lovely and delicious. I like to serve this one warm to room temperature.
I’ll give in to the siren song of the bacon very soon, I’m sure, but in the meantime I’m going to keep on looking for salads to pasta-fy!
- 8 ounces baby potatoes, cut in halves or quarters
- 8 ounces fresh string beans, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
- 8 ounces short pasta (ziti, penne, campagnelle)
- 2 tablespoons grainy mustard
- 1 eight ounce jar of tuna packed in oil
- ¼ cup capers (or olives!)
- 4 hardboiled eggs, cooled, peeled and cut in quarters
- Cook potatoes in simmering water for 8 minutes. Add string beans and cook for another 2 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- Cook pasta according to package directions in heavily salted water. Save ½ cup of pasta water and drain.
- Return pasta to pot and add 3 tablespoons of the tuna oil (supplement it with olive oil if you don't have enough from the jar) and the mustard. Stir until combined.
- Add in the potatoes and string beans and gently stir.
- Add just enough pasta water to make a little light sauce.
- Break up the tuna into bite sized pieces and gently stir into the pasta mixture along with the capers.
- Divide among plates, garnish each plate with 4 egg quarters and serve!