Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Un-Cooking: Herbed Balsamic Tuna Salad

gluten-free herbed tuna salad
Cooking is the last thing most people want to do when it's 100 degrees farenheit, as it was here yesterday. But we all have to eat, and that's where "un-cooking" comes in. I'm going to try to post a few recipes in the coming weeks for delicious gluten-free meals that can be prepared with no cooking, or with minimal cooking using only a microwave or toaster oven. Meals that won't make your house any hotter than it already is on a mid-summer's afternoon! This here is the first recipe in the series.

This tuna salad is a flavorful twist on an old favorite. It is healthier, lower-cholesterol and more colorful than my other favorite tuna salad which is still my standby. Brightly colored bell peppers are a beautiful and tasty alternative to the usual celery, and a vinaigrette takes the place of mayonnaise - Though adding some mayo will make it creamier, if you prefer. The fresh herbs really shine in this salad, and while I used fresh dill and thyme this time around, I've also used chives and other fresh herbs at other times, so feel free to experiment.

Make sure to use tuna that was not cooked in broth. Check ingredients carefully, because many do contain broth, and it is not always easy to tell if the broth contained gluten as many commercial broths do. Stick to dolphin-safe, low-mercury varieties of tuna for the sake of your own health and the environment.

I enjoy this dish tossed with a green salad, but my favorite way to enjoy it is on toasted Enjoy Life Foods Rye-less Rye Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread, with lettuce from my garden, and a few thick slices of ripe avocado:

tuna salad on gluten-free ryeless rye bread


[Gluten-Free / Soy-Free / Nut-Free / Egg-Free / Dairy-Free / Pareve]

2 6-ounce cans of chunk light tuna in water
1/2 cup red and yellow bell peppers, diced finely
1/4 cup kalamata olives, chopped OR 2 small dill pickles, diced
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh dill
1 Tsp finely chopped fresh thyme
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
Freshly ground pepper (a generous amount)
Optional: 1-2 Tbsp mayonnaise
Optional: 1 Tsp chopped chives

With a fork flake the tuna apart into small pieces. Add all other ingredients. Whisk olive oil, vinegar and dijon mustard (and mayonnaise, if you're using it) together in a small bowl until well-combined and creamy. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. Add more ground pepper to taste. Serve on top of a green salad or bed of lettuce, or in a sandwich.

This recipe is part of Weekend Herb Blogging, hosted this week by Kalyn's Kitchen.


Anonymous said...

this looks and sounds so good :) have bookmarked to try :) nice to see you posting~ :)

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to make this recipe! Looks and sounds delicious. :)

ML said...

Looks wonderful! I love tuna fish recipes without the mayo. Thanks, I'll try this.

Kalyn Denny said...

Mmm, this sounds really good. I'm big into canned tuna lately, having newly discovered the Italian tuna packed in olive oil. Don't forget to send me the link so I don't miss you. (I don't remember it, did you send it already?)

Sea said...

Yay- a new recipe! This looks really tasty. I love tuna salad made any way. :) About the vegetable broth ingredient- I think it's actually regulated by the FDA so that at least when it is used in canned tuna it should not contain gluten. Both Starkist and Chicken of the Sea say that none of their canned tunas contain gluten. (Although one Starkist Tuna Creation - Herb & Garlic contains ingredients from wheat and barley presumably in the flavorings, not in the broth itself.) I have never wanted the extra calories in the tuna packed in oil so researched it a bit. :) I will definitely try your tuna recipe- it sounds great!


Allergic Girl® said...

looks lovely and welcome back--i've missed your recipes and round ups!

Anonymous said...

Uh huh, I knew there's more than just that can of tuna hehe, I've got few cans left, I can do this, thanks !:)

Katie Zeller said...

Great tuna salad... and paired with avocado YUM!
I wouldn't have thought of that...

Shannon said...

Ooh! Yummy! It also makes me giggle because I just posted about un-cooking right before reading this post. :)

Do you like the rye-lees rye? I have been very disappointed with store bought GF breads. I have not yet tried Enjoy Life bread. Good?

ByTheBay said...

I tend to dislike storebought GF bread (that's why I make my own - I have several bread recipes on this blog including my Multigrain Miracle Bread which is the best GF bread I've tasted yet). I'm all about home-baked bread. However, it's the middle of summer and I'm not about to bake bread in 90 degree weather. So I've been making do with storebought- And the best one I've found is the Ryeless Rye. I really love it. However, it's hard to find and the health food store here is no longer carrying it since their distributor has discontinued it. They said they're not sure Enjoy Life is actually making it anymore, however you can still buy it here. I will probably buy a bunch of loaves of it from them since it's cheapest to buy frozen items mail order if you buy them in bulk. one of these days I'll get around to e-mailing Enjoy Life to see if they are still making this product. I sure hope so.

Shannon said...

Hmmm...I wonder if Enjoy Life would sell it directly to me. I work not far from them and could pick it up in person. That's a thought...

K Allrich said...

I just discovered this post - this sounds really delicious. I can do low mercury tuna - but not mayo - so I am all over this combo! ;)



Anonymous said...

I am not even on the GF bandwagon nor am I allergic... but I must say THANK YOU for this great recipe.

I have been on the lookout for tuna recipies sans mayonnaise and this hit the spot. I am a big fan of tuna just for the health aspect.. on wheat pita or bread.. I might have to try that Rye-less rye!

this recipe is delicious and fun.. I had my own fun sauteeing the peppers in garlic and olive oil 1st, and I added a touch of honey to the "dijon viniagrette" mix, that I also want to say, goes well over a spinach salad by itself as well.

thank you for such a fun, healthy, meditteranian style non-cooked dish!

25, Orange County, California
please email me your comments or other similar dishes!

The Bilingual Couch said...

I made this tonight and was so happy with it! Finally, a good tuna recipe without mayo!

The Bilingual Couch said...

I made this recipe today. Finally--a tuna recipe without the mayo and all the taste!