when I met my friend Patti for lunch. (I’m only telling you this so I have an excuse to use the word pleather). Lunch with a friend should always be happy, healthy and hot. Here’s what we both ordered…
an Ahi tuna nicoise salad.
The salad was composed of seared ahi tuna, hard boiled eggs, black olives, haricots verts (also known as skinny green beans), cherry tomatoes, and roasted fingerling potatoes. This was all on a bed of mixed greens, with a lemon basil vinaigrette on the side. Patti doesn’t like olives, so I stole hers…soooo good!
Not only was the salad amazing, it was a truly healthy lunch choice. You know I’m big on leafy greens. I try to get them in a few times a day whenever I can. Cherry tomatoes (and tomatoes in general) are a good source of vitamin C, as well as the powerful antioxidants lycopene and zea-xanthin. Green beans contain beneficial antioxidants as well, and are a great source of fiber. The tuna and hardboiled eggs are providing protein, and the olives are a source of healthy fat. If you are not having fat with your vegetables, you are missing out! Fat helps your body absorb the nutrients in your vegetables. I’m not big on potatoes, but the tiny little fingerling potatoes were delicious.
The lemon basil dressing was a perfect touch. I didn’t ask what was in it. Even in the best restaurants, salad dressings are usually made of overly refined vegetable oils that are doing absolutely nothing for us. Many times I skip them entirely, but this one was so tasty I just went for it. I try to make good choices but not drive myself nuts.
A word about the tuna…Ahi tuna is a high mercury fish. Levels of mercury have been increasing in the waters of the Pacific Ocean for decades. If I were pregnant or nursing (thankfully I’m not!) I would avoid it. As it is, I am cautious. But I love a good spicy tuna roll, and really enjoy a nice piece of ahi from time to time. I don’t prepare tuna at home. Sardines and salmon are much less contaminated. In general, smaller fish, and fish that eat mostly plants or plankton, will be less contaminated.
For my central PA friends, you can find this salad at Harvest at the Shoppes of Susquehanna. It’s one of my favorite places to eat, and I’ve had this salad many times.
So how was this lunch happy, healthy and hot? Well, I’m always happy when I get together with a close friend (and when I’m wearing pleather leggings!) The salad was a healthy mix of colorful vegetables, protein, and fat. And that in turn supports our energy levels, firm skin, and shiny hair. And that’s hot!