- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 4, 2006

At this time of year, if you’re looking for a great outdoor meal, keep in mind this simple version of a classic dish, to serve with a glass of wine. It’s healthy fare, too, as well as tasty — low-fat, combining protein, greens and seasonings in nice balance.

The recipe has an interesting pedigree, as part of a feature on community dining in the June issue of Cooking Light magazine.

Here’s the story: Monday night, we learn, is family night at the Kitchen, a bustling restaurant in downtown Boulder, Colo. That’s when the chefs and owners Hugo Matheson and Kimbal Musk host a family-style meal for a group of up to 24 adventurous persons who sit around a long wooden table and enjoy a surprise menu.

The chefs use seasonal ingredients, and their definition of community extends to local purveyors.

They list names of farmers and producers who grow and create the foods they serve, and they make a point of using produce at its peak in season.

At the end of such a community meal, the feature says, “diners depart sated with good food and the companionship of friends.”

Here is one of their recipes:

Grilled tuna nicoise salad

DRESSING:

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon

teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

SALAD:

4 cups water

pound green beans, trimmed

pound quartered Yukon Gold potatoes

6 6-ounce yellowfin tuna steaks

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cooking spray

4 cups mixed salad greens (about 2 ounces)

1/4 cup nicoise olives

3 hard-cooked large eggs, halved

To prepare the dressing, combine the first 6 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Set dressing aside.

To prepare salad, bring 4 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan.

Add beans; cook 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon; plunge beans into ice water. Drain and set aside. Add potatoes to pan; cook 10 minutes or until tender. Drain potatoes, and set aside.

Prepare grill. Sprinkle fish with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Place fish on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Combine beans, potatoes, salad greens, olives and dressing in a large bowl; toss well. Place salad mixture on a large platter.

Arrange tuna steaks and egg halves over salad mixture.

Makes 6 servings (serving size 1 cup salad mixture, 1 tuna steak and 1 egg half).

Nutrition information per serving: 295 cal., 7.5 g total fat (1.7 g saturated), 44.5 g pro., 10.1 g carbo., 2.3 g fiber, 183 mg chol., 362 mg sodium.

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