"Twisted" Nicoise Salad

“Twisted” Nicoise Salad

                    BLACK OLIVE VINAIGRETTE:
 1/4           cup  pitted kalamata olives -- rinsed

2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped basil
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped parsley
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
TWISTED NICOISE:
1 1/3 pounds small yellow-flesh potatoes – cut in half
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and black pepper
1/2 pound green beans – trimmed
4 cups baby salad greens
3/4 pound ripe red tomatoes – sliced
1 pound grilled chicken breast – cut in strips
1/4 cup grated provolone cheese
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives

To make vinaigrette, combine olives, water, vinegar, basil, parsley and pepper in food processor bowl or blender jar; process or blend until puréed. With motor running, slowly pour in oil.

In medium saucepan, cook potatoes in 2 inches simmering water, covered, 25 to 30 minutes or until tender. Drain potatoes and return them to saucepan; shake over low heat 1 to 2 minutes to dry thoroughly. Crush potatoes with fork, leaving some large chunks; stir in oil and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. In large saucepan, bring 2 quarts water to a boil; add 1 tablespoon salt. Drop in beans; boil about 3 minutes or until cooked but still slightly crunchy. Drain beans; drop into bowl of ice water to cool quickly; drain and set aside.

Toss greens with 4 tablespoons vinaigrette and divide among 4 large plates or shallow bowls. Arrange potatoes, tomatoes, beans and chicken around greens, dividing them equally; drizzle with remaining vinaigrette. Sprinkle cheese on top; garnish with olives.

NOTES : Shred smoked chicken or leftover roast chicken and use in place of grilled chicken.