Pan Bagnat Recipe
Ari Weinzweig, founder of Zingerman’s, passed along this recipe for his favorite picnic nosh: “Pan bagnat is the classic sandwich eaten on the beach in Nice. The key is to get a good crusty roll that will hold up to the oil, because the longer you let pan bagnat sit, the more the flavors soak into the bread, and the better the sandwich.”
What to buy: Look for good tuna, especially something from the Mediterranean.
- 1 crusty French roll
- High-quality extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 (3-ounce) can oil-packed Mediterranean tuna
- 3/4 ounce pitted Niçoise olives (about 6 olives)
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 3 to 4 basil leaves
- Sliced red bell pepper
- Red wine vinegar
- Sea salt
- Slice the bread, brush it with olive oil, then top one of the slices with tuna, olives, red onion, basil leaves, bell pepper, a drizzle of red wine vinegar, a bit of sea salt, and some freshly ground black pepper. (For a variation, use tapenade instead of olives.) Close the sandwich, wrap it well, and head for the blanket.
Beverage pairing: Commanderie de la Bargemone, Coteaux d’Aix en Provence Rosé, France. A French seaside sandwich deserves the ultimate French seaside wine, and these two both come from roughly the same region. A good rosé should be crisp and fruity, but finish savory and dry. This one does just that, and its flavors and zing will hit all the notes of the sweet tuna, sharp olives, basil, and bell pepper in the sandwich.