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Albacore Tuna, Hard-Cooked Egg and Tapenade Sandwiches

The combination of tuna, eggs, anchovies and olives recalls pain bagnat, a sandwich sold on the streets of Nice, in the south of France. The sandwiches are best when made at least an hour ahead, so the flavors can meld and infuse the bread.

Ingredients:

For the tapenade: 

  • 3/4 cup pitted black olives, such as niçoise or Kalamata 
  • 6 olive oil-packed anchovy fillets, rinsed and patted dry 
  • 1/4 cup capers, drained and rinsed 
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped 
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste 
  •   
  • 2 cans (6 oz. each) albacore tuna, preferably olive-oil packed 
  • 3 Tbs. red wine vinegar 
  • 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil 
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 
  • 1 baguette, 22 to 24 inches long 
  • 3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and thinly sliced 

Directions:

To make the tapenade, in a food processor, combine the olives, anchovies, capers and garlic. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Continue to process, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed, until the tapenade is pureed but still coarse. Transfer to a small bowl and season with pepper.

In a bowl, stir together the tuna, vinegar and olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Cut the baguette crosswise into 4 equal sections and then split each section horizontally. Scoop out some of the soft interior from both sides.

Spread the tops and bottoms of the baguette sections evenly with the tapenade. Divide the tuna mixture among the bottom halves, then top with the egg slices. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with the top halves of the baguette sections. Wrap each sandwich tightly in plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the flavors to blend. (The sandwiches can be made up to 1 day ahead, wrapped and refrigerated; bring to room temperature before serving.)

Unwrap the sandwiches, place on individual plates and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Essentials of Breakfast and Brunch, by Georgeanne Brennan, Elinor Klivans, Jordan Mackay and Charles Pierce (Oxmoor House, 2007).