What Is A Composed Salad?


In French (and French-inspired) cuisine, a salade composée refers to a salad in which an assortment of ingredients are arranged aesthetically on a plate and drizzled with vinaigrette, rather than tossed with it. (That said, we’re not afraid to toss a salad and call it composed.) 
Usually, a composed salad is meant to be a meal in itself; one famous example is the salade niçoise, a specialty of Nice that is better made in Los Angeles these days and includes crudités, hard-boiled eggs, anchovies, and sometimes tuna, rice, potatoes or green beans (although what properly constitutes a salade niçoise is a matter of personal taste and heated debate).  
A successful composed salad should have a balance of colors, flavors and textures, and may contain crudités such as tomatoes, greens or carrots; cold chicken, tuna, anchovies or eggs; a bit of cheese; and potatoes, pasta, rice or beans with an olive oil-based vinaigrette. The possibilities are really endless.

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