Pan Bagnat is a colorful Provencal layered sandwich of good quality canned tuna, an aromatic olive salad in vinaigrette and hard boiled eggs. If the aroma is familiar to you this is roughly the sandwich version of Salade Nicoise. Pan Bagnat translates to bathed bread to give you some idea how the vinaigrette influences the dish, but this is by no means a sloppy sammy. It is a healthier alternative to a traditional tuna sandwich with mayonnaise and pleasing to an adult palate. This admittedly is TALLBlonde's favorite food group: the sandwich.
Best made in advance if you can curb your appetite so that the flavors meld and flow into a tangy sourdough baguette. Tuna used must be a good quality albacore packed in olive oil as albacore tends to have a dry quality so olive oil is preferable to water-packed. Whenever cooking with olive oil, always purchase California olive which is certified 100% olive oil and not cut with other oils. EVOO from other countries are not always pure olive oil.
1 large sourdough baguette cut open longways
good quality California olive oil
red wine vinegar
garlic clove, smashed
anchovy filets diced, required
salt/pepper to taste
green and black olives
diced red onion
fresh Italian parsley
(see additional options below)
good quality albacore tuna packed in olive oil, drained
sliced Roma tomatoes
hard cooked eggs, peeled and sliced in quarters, required
Slice open sourdough baguette, remove white center creating a trough for sandwich ingredients piled high, toast in the oven lightly for five minutes, remove and press down creating a larger trough
Make vinaigrette to your taste, set aside
Chop ingredients for olive salad creating a relish size consistency. Add drained tuna to olive salad and pour over vinaigrette and stir.
Spread tuna/olive mixture over one baguette half. Next layer with sliced fresh ripe tomatoes, finish with quartered hard boiled eggs. Sprinkle other baguette half with EVOO and place baguette top over the egg layer.
Wrap in plastic wrap and press down with a weight for 10-20 minutes. Unwrap, slice into 4 individual sandwiches and enjoy. A sourdough round can also be used and sliced into wedges to serve.
fresh fennel bulb, diced or sliced thin
roasted red bell peppers
fresh sweet basil leaves
sliced fresh radishes
NOTE: Olive/Tuna/Vinaigrette mixture can be made ahead and kept covered in the refrigerator for a couple days, easy to make a quick 1-person sandwich on the run.