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Ask anyone in my family the name of the ubiquitous dish that was present at every holiday gathering, and they will unanimously tell you about the Ugly Salad. The Ugly Salad was my Oma’s recipe, and as its name would indicate, it wasn’t the prettiest salad. But it was full of delicious stuff: cauliflower, olives, roasted red peppers, and artichoke hearts to name a few. (I’m not giving away the recipe on this blog–sorry!) Personally, I don’t think it was all that ugly, but perhaps it qualified as such in the 1980s when salads were supposed to be neon iceberg green and bright tomato red. However aesthetically objectionable it was, it was delicious and there were rarely leftovers.
So I guess I should explain why I’m talking about a salad when this blog post is supposed to be about a sandwich. To make a long story short, this sandwich reminded me of the Ugly Salad because it is not the most aesthetically pleasing sandwich in the world, but it is certainly pleasing to the palate!
This sandwich was inspired by a French dish, the salade niçoise. A real Niçoise salad has a lot of non-vegan things in it, like eggs, tuna, and anchovies. Obviously you won’t find any of those things in here. I based this recipe in part off of the popular Not Tuna Salad recipe, found on the Whole Foods website. Then I added a few ingredients to give it the rich, salty flavor of a Niçoise salad; like olives, dijon, capers, and vegan mayo. Spread it on a baguette, stuff it in a pita, or eat it on a bed of lettuce–and enjoy!
Niçoise Salad Sandwich
1 (15 ounce) can no-salt-added garbanzo beans, rinsed, drained and mashed
1/2 apple, cored and chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons dill relish
1 medium shallot, minced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp capers
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp vegan mayo
1/2 C kalamata olives, sliced or chopped
kosher salt and cracked pepper to taste
2 large tomatoes
4 small baguettes
Combine all ingredients except for the tomatoes, olive oil, and baguettes. Use a food processor to save time chopping and mashing. Season with salt, pepper, and extra lemon juice if needed.
Slice baguettes in half. Brush each side each side with olive oil (or you could use more mustard and vegan mayo). Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread garbanzo bean mixture evenly on baguettes. Top with tomato. Wrap baguettes in parchment paper if picnicking or otherwise transporting the sandwiches.