Sunday, May 15, 2011
Eggland's Best Puttanesca Salad
A week ago Friday was a totally lovely day. I started with the St. Margaret's Guild Decorator's Show House. The National Bank of Indianapolis does a party each year and invites clients and friends. I'm lucky to be included. Thank you Susan!!! It's a delightful way to mix business and pleasure. Often, the house is just over the top and way too contemporary for my taste. But, typically there's at least one room I'd happily recreate in my home. And, I always walk away with an idea or two - or three! I got separated from the other three gals about halfway through the house and figured I'd catch up with them at lunch. But, when I got to lunch and some former colleagues from my banking days were congregated at one table, I couldn't resist joining them. How much fun to catch up with Joe and Ken and John. And, to meet Joe and Ken's wives. That's really the only thing I miss about being a banker. With very few exceptions I got to work with some of the finest folks in the world.
During dessert, I wandered down to the table where Susan and Sandra and Sandy were sitting. They were engrossed in a wonderful discussion about hair. Meg Irsay, wife of Indianapolis Colts owner, Jim Irsay, just shaved her head. So, off we went on hair and makeup and contact lenses and all the things we women do. Finally it was time to head to the office and work on appointments for next week. But, that didn't last too long since I had a massage at 3:30. Margi has magic fingers. She manages to make all the tension disappear. She even manages to kind of make my back forget that I've been in too many rearend collisions to count. Last time was a gal distracted by a spider on her lap. The time before was a driving instructor who was looking at something in his car and not at the fact I was stopped because the truck in front of me was turning left...
I got home and had an hour to fix and serve dinner before Connie was to leave for his bridge game. As dinner was about to be served, he discovered a text from his bridge partner saying she'd spent the day moving and if they could pass this week that'd be great. So, we ate a leisurely dinner and off to the garden he headed. I washed the dinner dishes and logged onto the office computer and got a bit of work done.
Now, I got a coupon from the folks at Eggland's Best for a 12 pack of eggs. Cool. Part of an 18 pack was already in the fridge. They're typically the brand of eggs I use. And, even better, there's a contest for egg recipes. So, Connie and I started brainstorming. Eggs are so versatile. Along with cheese, they're one of our go-to foods. We love deviled eggs, egg salad, hard cooked eggs with anchovies and olive oil, eggs benedict. Um, we love eggs. Now, what in the world was I going to do to showcase eggs? So, how would eggs go with the flavors of puttanesca? How about a puttanesca salad topped with a tuna filet and a poached egg?
Connie was dubious when I told him my plan. After he inhaled his salad, he said the poached egg with the tuna was brilliant. The flavors were perfect together as were the textures. I felt pretty much the same way myself. The only thing we disagreed on was whether the tomatoes should be quickly sauteed or served raw. I vote for the sautee, he votes for the raw. Either way, this was a winner!
Eggland's Best Puttanesca Salad
2 dozen grape tomatoes, halved
8 - 10 kalamata olives
2 T capers
2 cloves garlic, minced
extra virgin olive oil
4 cups salad greens
1 tin rolled anchovies with capers (optional)
2 fresh tuna filets
Divide the salad greens between two dinner plates.
Get all of your skillets ready. In a medium skillet, bring water about an inch deep to a boil. In a large skillet (for the tuna filets,) pour about a tablespoon of olive oil. Pour about a tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet. Heat the olive oil to shimmering in both skillets.
The eggs will take the longest. You want to poach them in the gently boiling water. Be careful not to overcook them since runny yolk plus tuna plus puttanesca sauce is incredible.
Add the garlic, tomatoes, olives and capers to the medium skillet with olive oil. Saute them just until the tomatoes are just softened.
Salt and pepper them, then quickly saute the tuna filets. You just want to sear the exterior.
Now, assemble the salads. The tuna goes on top of the greens. The sauce is strewn around the tuna. The anchovies also go around the tuna. Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil and good quality wine vinegar over the sauce and greens. Then, top with the poached egg. Salt and pepper the egg and serve.