* This is a sponsored post for DS Automobiles *
Niçoise Salad is such a classic and simple salad. Protein packed with eggs and tuna, plenty of greens from the salad and green beans and lots of added flavour from the olives and zesty mustard dressing. This salad was inspired by a recent drive of the DS4 Crossback - it's stylish and French and this is exactly what this salad is too.
Who is ready for salad season? Forget about boring iceberg salads with store bought dressings, we have some amazing salad recipes coming up over the next few months to show you that salads don't have to be boring! We have already started with our Roasted Butternut Squash Salad, but this one is much lighter and served on a bit platter it is perfect for sharing.
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The Niçoise Salad originates in the French city of Nice and dates back to the 19th Century. Whether you serve it neatly on a platter or all tossed together in a big bowl, everyone has their own version of it (including all the top chefs) and this is ours. Some people, more traditionalists, would not add cooked potatoes and green beans and instead add raw shallots and artichoke, but we love the heartiness of adding potato and the extra crunch from the green beans.
The original salad was simply tomatoes, anchovies and olive oil and it was said to be basic food for poor people. Over time, different ingredients have been added by various chefs (who can never agree), to create the classic Niçoise Salad that we know and love today. We wanted to make our own little change to it though, and we crumbled over some soft goats cheese just before serving, because everything is better with goats cheese.
When we tested out the new DS4 Crossback recently, DS challenged us to come up with a dish that was inspired by our drive, or an element of the car. What really struck me first about the car is how stylish it it. On closer inspection, and testing out everything the car has to offer, DS have really packed in lots of different features. That is exactly what a Niçoise Salad is too - it's stylish and it really packs in lots of different ingredients and flavours in our dish.
The DS4 Crossback is such a smooth drive and after a weekend of driving it, we were really sad to say goodbye to it. What's the main thing we are going to miss about it? The back massager that is build in to the front seats. Yes, that's right - a massager. Being stuck in traffic is made that little bit easier with this, and we should know because we were stuck on the M6 for an hour in the heat. The air-con was very much welcomed too!
The DS4 Crossback is so comfortable to drive. The 6-speed manual gearbox meant that the car could cope with anything that we encountered. Whether it was the motorway, small country lanes or the hills that challenged us on our day out in the Lancashire and Cumbrian countryside. DS have a pedigree of making quality cars and the DS4 Crossback is no exception. It does 0-60 in less than 9 seconds and the 60 litre fuel tank gives a huge 72mpg. The drive and build of the car were never in question - it was always going to be great.
What makes the DS4 Crossback an extraordinary car is that it comes loaded with features. Keyless entry and start; a colour reversing camera (perfect for those that have trouble with parking); Bluetooth audio & telecommunication connectivity; recommended gear notifications; heated front seats (with massage option); headlights that automatically sense the level of darkness, customisable dashboard colours. This is just a few of the gadgets that make the DS4 Crossback a truly remarkable car. Oh, and the enormous boot that allowed us to fit our huge pram and many, many shopping bags in! We loved it.
The back seats have plenty of space for a large car seat too, meaning that this car is ideal for a family. We loved the tinted windows in the back too, as it stopped the sun from glaring in on Avery's face. We do have stick on sun shields in our car, but the sun always manages to sneak round it - this solved that problem and Avery had an uninterrupted snooze because of it.
The DS4 Crossback, also looks really cool. It is sleek and stylish, but also looks like it means business. It has something for everyone - just like the Niçoise Salad.
We are big fans of sharing food when we have people over for dinner, and putting out a platter like this just makes things so much more social. Open up a bottle of wine, put this in the middle of the table with a cheese board and some bread and let everyone dig in. The French are much more social with their meals, and they take time to enjoy them, which is why we served this up as a sharing platter rather than in individual bowls.
- 10 new potatoes, halved
- 1 can of tuna in spring water
- 2 cup mixed watercress and rocket lettuce
- 3 tomatoes, quartered
- 3 eggs
- 10 kalamata olives
- 10 green olives
- 100 g green beans
- 40 g soft goats cheese
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 Lemon (juice and zest)
- 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper
- Add the potatoes to a pan of boiling water and simmer for 10 minutes.
- In a bowl, mix together the olive oil, white vine vinegar, lemon juice and zest, wholegrain mustard and salt and pepper and set aside.
- Add the eggs to a separate pan of boiling water and simmer for 8 minutes.
- Add the green beans to the pan of potatoes (after the potatoes have cooked for 10 minutes) and cook for a further 4 minutes.
- Once the eggs, potatoes and green beans have cooked, drain and set aside. Peel the eggs and cut in the quarters.
- Arrange all the ingredients on to a platter and sprinkle the goats cheese over the watercress and rocket. Drizzle over the dressing. Serve with a big chunk of crusty French bread.
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**This Niçoise Salad recipe was commissioned by DS Automobiles. All opinions are my own**