But there we were in Nice so it seemed the right thing to choose for lunch. We fell upon a little place that coincidentally I had noted down in my notebook prior to going to France and the name had stuck in my head. It was called l'Escalinada, open 7 days a week, 'a traditional auberge in old Nice'.
It wasn't my idea of an auberge/inn but it was indeed a sweet little place on the edges of the old town: all sunny umbrellas, little tables crowded together, cheery checked red and white tablecloths, blackboards with the menu of the day written on them, and bustling!
I enjoyed my salad especially the colourful presentation but it was only later that I thought to myself: but there were no green beans in it. More of that later.
Now, the second Salade Niçoise (pron: nee/suaz) I had was at the airport. We had a few hours to kill before our 5pm flight back to Istanbul a few days ago as we had to return the car before 2pm. Off we went to find somewhere to eat. Nice Airport is frankly a tired-looking place with eating places to match. However we did find the Riviera Restaurant that was better than the Paul we had tried previously.
Anyway, this one had the green beans!
It is only now that I am back home that I have a moment to check out the actual ingredients for this salad and it seems it is a can of worms: apparently the French, especially in the Nice area, will clearly state that no cooked vegetables are to be used! So not only no beans but never boiled potatoes.
'...la salade Niçoise ne contient pas de légumes cuits'. So there.
It should also contain tinned tuna and not grilled or seared. I think I would rather like it with the grilled actually! And one last little quibble: EITHER tuna OR anchovies, not both!