I have so many happy memories of spending time in the south of France with my daughters when they were little. Every summer, we would take our annual trip to Provence to visit family. While we were there, we would skip around all of the beach towns in southern France soaking up the sun and sampling the amazing food unique to each village.
My favorite place to visit was always Nice. It’s not only stunningly beautiful, it’s rich with culture and absolutely full of amazing foods from across many cultures. Its central and ideal location on the Mediterranean and ancient Roman roots made the town a cultural melting pot of people who have, for centuries, immigrated from locations all around the world. As a result, the food in Nice is unique, colorful, and features a mix of culinary delights created in France, Italy, Greece, the Middle East, and beyond.
Many of my most magical memories were made at the beach or playgrounds in Nice with a pan bagnat in one hand and my daughters’ hands in the other. This salade nicoise in a roll is full of flavor and feels like happiness on a warm summer day. Every time I eat one of these sandwiches, it takes me instantly back to a simpler, sunny time in my life. If I close my eyes, I can just imagine being there on that pebbly beach in the warm sun.
Ingredients (makes 2 sandwiches):
2 crusty loaf rolls or baguettes
1 7 oz. can of high-quality tuna
4 anchovy filets
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. shallots, minced
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
½ c. Nicoise or Kalamata olives, halved
2 roma tomatoes, sliced
½ cucumber, sliced
½ red bell pepper, sliced
2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
Handful of basil leaves
Salt and pepper
Cut the rolls or baguettes in half lengthwise. Dig out some of the bread from the center of the bottom so that you can drop your tuna filling in. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp. olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
To make the filling, combine 2 Tbsp. olive oil, red wine vinegar, shallots, olives, salt and pepper. Mix together and add tuna. Mix again thoroughly to combine.
Fill the hollowed out side of the bread with the tuna mixture. Top with anchovies, followed by hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, cucumbers, red bell peppers and basil.
Wrap the sandwiches tightly in plastic wrap or foil. Place something heavy on top of the sandwiches (such as a heavy pot) for about 10 minutes. This helps to infuse all of the oil and ingredients together. Unwrap and enjoy!