Watercress Salad and Tuna Sandwiches

Posted on April 4, 2011

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Ok, right off the bat let me say that I’m really picky about my tuna.  I don’t eat much meat or seafood, so when I do I try to make sure that it’s the best and most sustainable option possible.  Tuna, particularly Blue-fin Tuna, is heavily over fished and was impacted negatively by the Deepwater Horizon spill last year.  If you choose to eat tuna I suggest you google your brand of choice and check out their methods and sustainability.  Look for a brand like Wild Planet that makes this information easily assessable.  If a company doesn’t have this information up front and on display, it’s probably because they don’t have anything to brag about.

Now on to the watercress.  Watercress was one of those things that I had heard of but never seen or tasted, so when it showed up in the Co-op’s produce case I just had to try some.  It is a delicate slightly spicy green with an almost floral aspect when chewed.  The leaves are smallish, less than an inch across.  You can eat the stems as well but I stuck largely to the leaves for appearances sake.  It made a really refreshing accompaniment to the more intense richness of the tuna.  In the future I would like to try it mixed with other greens, in cold gazpacho style soups, or maybe I’ll even learn how to make watercress sandwiches.  This time around, since I had never used it before, I decided to go with a really simple preparation.

Salad

  • about one cup watercress, rinsed and pulled into bite size pieces.
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Just before eating toss all ingredients together until watercress is evenly coated.  See?  I told you it was simple!

Sandwiches

  • 1 6oz can tuna, drained
  • 4 slices of bread, toasted
  • slices of cheddar, enough for a single layer on each sandwich
  • 3 Tbsp mayonnaise
  • Spike or Mrs. Dash to taste
  • sliced onions (optional)

Combine tuna, mayonnaise (which I normally hate and won’t eat on anything else), and your seasoning in a small bowl.  I suggest using a fork for this, you’ll get a nice texture that way.  Using the fork put half the tuna mixture on a slice of  toast, smoothing it out to a uniform thickness.  Top with a single layer of cheese and sliced onions if using.  Put a second slice of toast on top and cut to desired shape.  I like triangles but it doesn’t really matter.  Repeat for second sandwich.  Plate with watercress salad.

This makes for nice, light, slightly decadent feeling lunch.  If you don’t want to go searching for watercress you can serve the sandwiches with dill pickles.  If you want to go vegan try a creamy sandwich, I suggest avocado and tomato with slices of sweet red onion.

Stay tuned for more ingredient experiments.  It will be CSA season soon and I should have some fun new veggies to work with!

 

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