Toast w/ Sicilian tuna

by AdamB


Google Sicilian tuna salad and you get a ton of variations — with anchovy dressing, poached in olive oil or chilled for hours.  At the least, none have mayo and all have lots of fresh herbs, some crunchy veggies and something cured like olives and capers. Maybe somewhere in Palermo there is a wizened proprietor of a paninoteca who knows the secret of true Sicilian tuna.   For now, this recipe is quick and tasty, and has lots of other uses — bruschetta topping, chunky dip for vegetables or salad-as-a-meal with a whole grain like farro.  Avocado or white beans are excellent additions for a heartier dish.

Serves 2


1 tin tuna (5 oz to 6 oz), drained and rinsed

3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped

1 medium red onion, peeled and chopped

2 stalks celery, rinsed and chopped

.5 cup fresh parsley, dill or cilantro, rinsed and chopped

2T capers

juice of one half lemon

1T sherry vinegar

2t good quality olive oil

1T smoked paprika

salt + pepper

2 slices whole grain bread (I like Trader Joe’s wheat berry bread)



Dump carrots, celery and onions into a large salad bowl and salt generously.  After 30 minutes, strain and discard water.

Pulse the herbs and red onion in a mini chopper until fairly fine.  Add oil, lemon juice, vinegar, pepper and smoked paprika, and pulse a few more times until well blended.  Now add carrots and celery, and pulse until just chopped.  You do not want to mince the vegetables (or worse, pulverize them).

Dump mini chopper contents into the large salad bowl.  Scrape herbs and dressing from sides of chopper bowl. Now add tuna and capers, and mix a few times with large spoons.  Taste and adjust seasonings.


Make toast and top generously with salad.  Optionally, finish with a swirl of olive oil and extra salt, pepper and paprika.