This is not so much a niçoise recipe as a guide. Feel free to add as much or as little of each ingredient as you like - what's important is that every ingredient is as good quality as possible.
4 free-range eggs
8 small artichoke hearts, cooked
4 very ripe tomatoes, skinned and quartered
16 black olives
½ cucumber, peeled, sliced
4 spring onions, sliced
handful fine green beans, topped, tailed, blanched
1 tin anchovies in olive oil (or 1 tin good-quality tuna belly in olive oil)
1 tbsp freshly chopped chervil
small handful fresh basil
For the dressing, whisk the garlic and oil together in a bowl.
Place the eggs into a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring up to the boil, switch off the heat and leave for five minutes. Cool under a cold running tap for 2-3 minutes and then peel the eggs.
For the salad, arrange all of the salad ingredients (except the chervil and basil) in a shallow dish. Pour over the vinegar and garlic oil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Finish with a sprinkling of chervil and basil and serve at the table.
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