Irene in Danger
But then, she has more on her mind, like smuggled cocaine, a murder, a kidnapping, the constant sure knowledge that she and everyone around her is in danger, and the dreaded possibility she and Patrick might have to cancel the wedding.
Can Henny save the wedding? Recipes included.
Here’s one recipe from the books you might like.
Salade Niçoise is built around tuna—in France, undoubtedly fresh tuna, but a high-quality, canned variety is perfectly acceptable. Henny likes to do it with canned albacore in olive oil.
Olives, green or ripe, are traditional, but Henny omits them because olives are on the short list of things she just doesn’t eat, along with bell peppers. If you like them, you may want to add strips, preferably of red peppers. Anchovies are a truly French contribution to the salad, and if you like them, they add a wonderful zing. Julia Child added an anchovy filet, twisted, on each hard-boiled egg quarter and scattered capers and chopped parsley on the finished salad.
The thing about this main-dish salad is you can create it to your taste. Choose the vegetables you prefer, but with an eye to color and appearance. Suggestions include tiny baby potatoes, peeled, boiled, and cut in quarters, if necessary; haricort vert (those tiny French green beans); artichoke hearts quartered; cherry tomatoes; hard-boiled eggs. Sometimes Henny adds tender, young asparagus spears if in season. She believes in simplicity—too many vegetables spoil the presentation.
Pour a little dressing over the potatoes when they are warm—they’ll absorb it better. Each vegetable and the tuna should be seasoned with a little dressing before becoming part of the arrangement. Lay out the vegetables and tuna in an attractive pattern, either on a platter or individual plates, on a bed of lettuce. Some cooks group ingredients; others prefer a more casual arrangement. Pour any remaining dressing over. If you need another batch of dressing, by all mean make it. You don’t want soup, but you don’t want a dry salad.
Vinaigrette is the traditional dressing for Salade Niçoise. Here’s the one Henny frequently uses (enough for two individual salads):
¼ c. olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
About Judy Alter
After an award-winning career writing historical fiction about women of the nineteenth-century American West, Judy Alter turned her attention to contemporary cozy mysteries. Several of her Kelly O’Connell Mysteries and Blue Plate Café Mysteries were published by Turquoise Morning Press and are still available. When her publisher went out of business, she became an indie publisher and barely looked back. Find her and a list of her books at http://www.judyalter.com Her avocation is cooking, and she is the author of Cooking My Way Through Life with Kids and Books, Gourmet on a Hot Plate, and Texas is Chili Country.
Where to find Irene in Danger and Saving Irene