Last weekend we visited our friend Tad in Fire Island – a magical, summer resort located two hours from New York City. Fire Island is one of several outer barrier islands located on the south shore of Long Island. This sliver of land is 50 kilometers long and between 160-400 meters wide. There are several communities on the island, and a number of them have no roads or ban vehicular traffic during the summer months. The white, sandy beach is the primary attraction, though there is also an active nightlife. There are few hotels on the island, so the vast majority of people stay in private homes that are commonly rented out for the summer.
On Sunday, Tad made one of his signature dishes for lunch – a summery, fresh, salad nicoise. This is the second recipe on my blog inspired by the French Mediterranean classic. For details on its origins see my earlier post.
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
1 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste
12-16 ounces tuna steak
10 ounces mixed greens
1-2 large tomatoes, sliced into sixths
1/8-1/4 lb pitted black olives
3 hard-boiled eggs, sliced into quarters (optional)
4-8 small potatoes, unpeeled, roasted and cooled, sliced into quarters
8-10 anchovy slices (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste
1. Make the salad dressing in a glass jar. Fill with ingredients and shake until well combined. Set aside.
2. Grill the tuna steaks for 2-3 minutes on each side (for rare) and 3-4 minutes on each side (for medium) until the outside is white in color. Remove from heat and cut into 1-inch cubes.
3. On an oblong or rectangular platter, arrange a bed of heaped greens. Spread tomatoes and olives over greens and top with tuna pieces. Arrange eggs, potatoes and anchovies around the perimeter of platter.
4. Dress with salt, pepper and salad dressing.