Spinach salad with grilled apricots and honey-mustard dressing recipe

spinach salad with grilled apricots and honey-mustard dressing | pamela salzman

What are you up to this weekend? Lots of plans? No plans? Is it finally good weather where you are? In classic Southern California beach tradition, our unseasonably warm winter has transitioned into a slightly chilly spring. Translation: it was 70 degrees two months ago and it’s 70 degrees today! Not quite bathing suit weather, but also not complaining at all, because I am not quite bathing suit-ready either if you know what I mean!  The unofficial start of summer is a double-edged sword, now isn’t it? Exciting because I can start dreaming of laying on the beach with magazines and watermelon while listening to the waves crashing at my feet.  But summer also means shorts and bikinis and I need to start kicking it into high gear.  Salads to the rescue!

honey-mustard dressing

When I put this spinach salad on my meal plan for this week, it dawned on me I had never posted it on the blog.  I taught the recipe several years ago in my classes and I realized I never got around to photographing it.  But it was really popular with my students and with my family too, so I thought better late than never and I think it’s perfect for Memorial Day weekend.  This is a very simple salad which you can make much more fancy or more substantial if you want. The basic bones of it is fresh baby spinach, stone fruit, nuts and a classic honey-mustard dressing.  You can add cooked chicken or goat cheese, radishes, shaved carrots, avocado, and/or sprouts if you want. The honey-mustard dressing is the first dressing Mr. Picky ever liked, so the recipe holds a place near and dear to my heart. Truth be told, he likes it more as a dip for raw veggies than as a salad dressing, but I’m cool with that.

grilling apricots

I think this salad would be great next to a burger, especially a turkey burger, or chicken with barbecue sauce. So if you’re entertaining this weekend or you need to bring a dish to a potluck, I think this salad would be perfect.  I also love the idea of balancing out a burger with something much more healthful like spinach salad with a clean dressing.  Even though kale salads have been in the spotlight the last few years, I think spinach is just as nutritious. Check out this comparison of nutrients from Prevention Magazine. Spinach is incredibly rich in iron, magnesium, potassium and Vitamin K, as well as the obvious Vitamin C and fiber. Most people find raw spinach a bit more palatable than raw kale. Kale however, has the advantage at a potluck since it holds up much better already dressed than spinach.  I have two fantastic kale salad recipes on my site if you’re interested:  one with a citrus dressing and one with a creamy lemon dressing.  Both favorites of mine.

sweet and spicy pecans

However you are spending your weekend, there is always room on your plate for something healthy!  Enjoy!

spinach salad with grilled apricots and honey-mustard dressing | pamela salzman

spinach salad with grilled apricots and honey-mustard dressing | pamela salzman

Spinach Salad with Grilled Apricots and Honey-Mustard Dressing
Author: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • Dressing:
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons raw mild-flavored honey
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons raw, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup unrefined, cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 oz baby spinach leaves
  • Suggested add-ins:
  • 3 fresh peaches or apricots, ripe, but firm
  • Olive oil or melted coconut oil for brushing peaches/apricots
  • ¼ cup nuts such as sliced almonds or toasted pecans of walnuts (I used Trader Joe's Sweet & Spicy pecans in these photos)
Instructions
  1. To make dressing – place mustard, honey and vinegar in a mini-food processor or blender and process until combined. With the motor running, pour oil in a steady stream until emulsified. Add salt and pepper to taste. (You can also do this in a bowl with a whisk, just take care to fully incorporate the honey.)
  2. Preheat a grill to medium. Cut peaches in half and remove pit. Cut into quarters if they're large. Brush with oil and grill until just charred, about 3-5 minutes. You can grill the other side if you like.  I like to grill apricot halves and cut in half again after they're off the grill.
  3. Place spinach in a serving bowl or platter and toss with just enough dressing to coat lightly. Top with grilled fruit and nuts. Drizzle with any remaining dressing, if desired.

Brussels sprout sliders recipe

brussels sprout sliders | pamela salzman During the holidays, I find myself saying quite often, "Oh, what the heck.  It's the holidays," as I add a handful of cheese or have an extra cookie.  But the "holidays" aren't just one day.  They start around Halloween and stretch until New Years Day, at which point most people I know declare the beginning of their cleanse to redeem themselves for overindulging during the "holidays."  I have to be honest and say that I am a little more lax during the holidays with my eating and I've never too happy in January when my jeans aren't too comfortable.  This year I'm going to be a little more mindful and not use the holidays as an excuse to act like every night is my last supper! brussels sprouts trim the sprouts My new favorite hors d'oeuvre is actually what motivated me to really try to find delicious recipes for the holidays that are also healthful.  Not only am I crazy about these little Brussels sprout sliders, but they were such a hit at my house with my friends this year, as well as with my cooking classes this month.  In fact, my friend Cheryl enjoyed them at my house for dinner one night and then asked my to bring the sliders to her house for a little get-together a few weeks later.  Winner! line them up in pairs "Sliders" have been very popular the last few years at parties.  They are basically mini-burgers.  I've seen them as simple as a basic mini beef or turkey patty and bun all the way to topped with caramelized onions, gorgonzola and arugula.  In this vegetarian and bread-less version, the sprouts are halved and roasted and become the "bun."  And then you can put whatever you want in between.  Do you get it?  Crazy good, and GOOD FOR YOU, TOO! sliced gruyere Before you think, "Oh, it's the holidays.  These aren't indulgent enough,"  I haven't seen anyone stop at just one.  They are super tasty and very satisfying.  I usually stick to the following fillings (which happen to go into my favorite grilled cheese): thinly sliced gruyere, sauteed onions, coarse-grain mustard, and roasted apple.  Sometimes I add them all, sometimes two or three.  Of course, you can add richer fillings, such as cooked bacon or a piece of honey-baked ham as well. sauteed onions Not a lot of time on your hands?  Here's what I would do:
  • slice the cheese up to a week ahead
  • saute the onions the day before and refrigerate
  • roast the sprouts several hours in advance and allow to sit at room temp
  • assemble the sliders a few hours in advance and warm through at 300 (or 350) for a few minutes
brussels sprout sliders | pamela salzman Since Brussels sprouts aren't all the exact same size like store-bought hamburger buns, the key step here is to keep the sprout halves next to each other so that you don't have to search around for the perfect match when you assemble.  Trust me, this is a good idea! brussels sprout sliders | pamela salzman I think this would be amazing to make as an hors d'oeuvre on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  And they would be perfect for any cocktail party when you need something hearty and green to balance out all the cheese dips.  But, if you are planning on these for a cocktail party, consider that they are individual bites, and take a little more time to assemble than a dip.  So you don't want to prepare a menu of too many items like this (=time-consuming.) brussels sprout sliders | pamela salzman I hope you have the happiest of holidays, filled with joy, love, peace, light and nourishing, delicious food! brussels sprout sliders | pamela salzman  
Brussels Sprout Sliders
Author: 
Serves: makes 20 full sliders or 40 half (open-faced) sliders
 
Ingredients
  • 6 Tablespoons unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil, DIVIDED, plus extra for greasing baking sheet
  • 1 large onion, sliced thin
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 20 medium Brussels sprouts, trimmed of any dry edges (but don’t slice off the whole core)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • Small block of gruyere cheese, thinly sliced and cut the same size as a sprout
  • Other add-in possibilities: Roasted apple or pear chunks, manchego cheese
Instructions
  1. Warm 2 Tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and a sprinkle of salt. Saute, stirring frequently, until they become more golden in color, about 15-20 minutes. Lower the heat a little and continue to cook until they are tender.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and brush with olive oil.
  3. Cut the Brussels sprouts in half from top to bottom, keeping the two halves close together. If you don’t, you will have to search for a pair that fits well together after they have roasted.
  4. Drizzle with remaining olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Roast for 20 minutes, then turn the sprouts and bake 15-20 more minutes or until tender.
  5. Take one half of a Brussels sprout, smear with mustard, add a piece of gruyere and a pinch of onions. Take the other half of the Brussels sprout and position it so the two sprouts are like the buns on a burger, with the cut sides facing each other, and secure with a toothpick. Serve at room temperature or warm on a baking sheet in a 325 degree oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

 

 

Vegan mac and cheese recipe

Vegan Mac & Cheese|Pamela Salzman

If someone tried to coax me a year ago with a “vegan mac and cheese” recipe, I would have politely said, “no, thank you.”  First of all, I actually don’t really like mac and cheese.  Not the boxed kind and not even the homemade kind.  Weird, I know.  And sad for my husband who looooooves it.  I used to have to make him the famous “Ronald Reagan’s favorite mac and cheese” recipe all the time when we first got married.  Tons of butter, cheddar cheese, milk, stomach ache for me.  Just not my thing.  It’s now the 21st century, and we’re both eating differently and I am open minded to alternative recipes.

potatoes, carrots, shallot, onion cook the veggies in water, but cover them everything into the blender"cheese sauce"

Although open minded or not, I’ve always felt if I’m not going to like the real deal, why would I like something pretending to be the real deal?  And most vegan mac and cheese recipes call for fake processed cheese or nutritional yeast and they’re just not that tasty, in my opinion.  Are you with me?  Well, according to myself and according to Mr. Picky who still doesn’t like cheese except Pecorino Romano in some soups and on pizza crust, this mac and cheese is the bomb.  I think it’s better than mac and cheese and he likes it because he has watched me make it and is confident there is not a morsel of cheese, real or fake, anywhere in this dish.

bread crumbs

 

You may have seen on a month ago a picture I posted of “vegan nachos” I made for the kids.  Here it is below.  That’s the same sauce for this!  You may have also seen a strange looking bowl of yellow stuff on my baked potato bar.  Same vegan cheese sauce!  Do you see the potential here?  What about as a dip for steamed veggies?  I might even make a soup out of this.  We are not just talking about a mac and cheese recipe.  We are talking about a life-changing delicious not-cheese sauce.   This sauce is a miracle.  It is made from potatoes, cashews, carrots, onions and a bunch of other completely natural foods blended into creamy, cheesy deliciousness.  Completely digestible (unless you are nut-free, in which case I am so sorry.  Buggers.)  I know I sound crazy.  I wouldn’t believe me either.

vegan nachos | pamela salzman

vegan mac & cheese|pamela salzman

vegan mac and cheese | pamela salzman

The only trick with this recipe is that you have to follow it exactly!  No eyeballing measurements.  No leaving things out.  Anytime I have guesstimated an amount with this recipe, it hasn’t worked quite as well, especially with ingredients like cayenne, lemon juice (you can leave this out, but just don’t add more than indicated) and garlic.  Some of the images on this post were taken of light spelt macaroni and some of whole spelt macaroni.  My family much prefers the light spelt pasta with this sauce, but you should use whatever suits you.  I have also tried this with brown rice pasta and a corn-quinoa pasta — both super!   Once I threw some small cauliflower florets into the pasta pot two minutes before the pasta was done and made a cauliflower mac and cheese.  (See above.)  I’m sure broccoli and kale would be great, too!  Can you see how much fun we are going to have with this??!!

vegan mac and cheese | pamela salzman

Vegan Mac & Cheese|Pamela Salzman

4.8 from 13 reviews
Vegan Mac and Cheese
Author: 
Serves: 6 as a side dish
 
Ingredients
  • 8 ounce package elbow macaroni pasta (I like spelt.)
  • 2 slices bread, torn into large pieces (whole grain works!)
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter (not vegan) or organic Earth Balance (vegan), divided
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped shallots
  • 1 cup (about 7 ounces) chopped Yukon gold potatoes (you can leave the peel on)
  • ¼ cup chopped carrots (about 1 small carrot)
  • ⅓ cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup raw cashews (soaked for 1-5 hours and drained if you your blender is weak)
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt (use 1 ¾ teaspoons if using Earth Balance)
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic, minced (about 1 medium clove)
  • ¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, add the shallots, potatoes, carrots, onion and water and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are very soft. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook the pasta in salted water until al dente, drain and put back into the pot.
  3. Put the bread pieces, 1 Tablespoon of butter and paprika in a food processor fitted with a metal blade and process until combined to a medium-fine texture, set aside.
  4. Place the cashews, salt, garlic, 5 Tablespoons butter, mustard, lemon juice, black pepper, and cayenne in a blender or food processor. Add the softened vegetables and cooking water to the blender or food processor and process until perfectly smooth.
  5. Pour the “cheese” sauce over the cooked pasta and combine until completely coated. Spread the mixture into an un-greased 11 x 8 casserole dish, sprinkle with prepared breadcrumb mixture. Bake for 30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown. If you add veggies (such as 1 or 2 cups of blanched cauliflower or broccoli) to the macaroni, cook in a 13 x 9 dish.
Notes
I actually don't make the vegan version for us because we can eat butter.   But I have made this with Earth Balance (which is vegan) many times and it has always turned out great.  I have never made this without the bread crumbs, though.  I think they provide a nice contrast in texture to the soft and creamy macaroni, but if not everyone will eat the bread crumbs, I am sure you can leave a square of the baking dish free of them.

Tuna patties recipe

Tuna Patties by Pamela Salzman

Everyone this week was asking about my Mother’s Day and I realized I completely forgot to recount the day for my dear readers!  After all, it has been tradition the last couple of years that my husband and bother-in-law and sometimes my father-in-law too, plan and execute Mother’s Day lunch for the ladies.  They even do the dishes!  The whole day feels like such a treat since I can even workout in the morning AND wash AND blow dry my hair.  Before noon!  Now that doesn’t happen very often.  But I also really look forward to trying some new eats, like the bulgur-feta burgers they made last year from Maria Speck’s cookbook.  Yummers!  Eating food that’s not for a class or my blog is a fun experience for me.

really fantastic tuna from Vital Choice

This year, the boys were a little behind on their planning and were deciding the menu on Sunday morning.  On their way to the grocery store.  I guess they figured the easiest place to go for recipes with which they were familiar was my website.  Yep.  More of my food.  Whatever.  It’s all fine.  They did a great job even though it took them about 5 hours to make 2 salads and strawberry shortcakes.  And my husband put his own (unintentional) spin on my avocado, jicama and mango salad when he substituted curry powder for cumin.  The first two letters are the same — easy mistake!  Nonetheless, it was a perfect Mother’s Day.

makings of tuna patties

I was working at home the other day with my assistant and normally we throw together leftovers from a class for lunch or make a kale salad with quinoa and whatever is in the vegetable drawer, but yesterday I had a craving for NOT MY FOOD.  I was feeling spontaneous and decided to look through my Foodily faves and Pinterest pins.  I came upon these tuna patties and nothing could stop me.  They reminded me of ones that my mom used to make, except I am fairly certain she used Ritz Crackers as the binder.  Gotta love the 70’s.

taste it for seasoning before you add the egg

I had all the ingredients handy and we threw these together in no time.  They were so delicious and reminded me a little of crab cakes, but much easier on the wallet.  Next time I make them, and there will be a next time, I’m going to make a sauce to go with them.  I’m thinking something creamy with lemon and capers.  I think these could also be great as a mini version for an hors d’oeuvre.  We ate them with a mixed green salad and it was a really satisfying lunch.

chilling before you saute helps them stay together

By the way, I have a terrific source for very high quality tuna.  I buy it from vitalchoice.com and although it might be one of the more expensive tunas, it’s also the absolute best and Vital Choice doesn’t use BPA in their can liners.  Thank you, Vital Choice!  This tuna has minimal mercury and is the freshest-tasting I’ve come across.  If you have a canned tuna that you love, please share!

Tuna Patties by Pamela Salzman

Let’s think ahead here.  If you want to put the patties together before you leave for the day, or before you start driving everyone to sports practices and music lessons, you can do that and then just saute them right before dinner.  You can add some oven fries and a salad or grilled vegetables for a very quick, easy and healthful dinner.  Or next year’s Mother’s Day lunch.  Hint, hint.

Tuna Patties by Pamela Salzman

Tuna Patties

Author: Pamela, adapted from simplyrecipes.com

Serves: makes 4 large patties or 7-8 smaller patties
 
Ingredients
  • 2 6-ounce cans tuna (if you use 5-ounce cans of tuna, decrease lemon juice and water to 2 teaspoons)
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs (or crumbled crackers or mashed potatoes)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (lemon your lemon before juicing it)
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon water (or liquid from the cans of tuna) - omit if your tuna is very wet like some chunk light varieties
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (measure after it’s chopped)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh green onions, shallots or chives
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (I used ½ tsp. salt and a few grinds of pepper)
  • A couple dashes of hot sauce or tabasco
  • 1 large egg (I imagine you can substitute 1 Tablespoon ground flax meal mixed with 3 Tablespoons warm water. Just let it sit for 15 minutes before you add it to the tuna mixture.)
  • 3 Tablespoons unrefined olive oil or ghee
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter or ghee
Instructions
  1. Drain the liquid from the tuna cans.  If the tuna is packed in water, reserve a tablespoon of the tuna water and also add a teaspoon of olive oil to the tuna mixture in the next step. If your tuna is soggy and not dry, do not add water.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the tuna, mustard, bread crumbs, lemon zest, lemon juice, water, parsley, onions, and hot sauce.  Add salt and pepper and taste for seasoning before adding in the egg.  Add egg to mixture and combine.
  3. Line a baking sheet or a tray with parchment or waxed paper.  To make a patty, shape some of the mixture into a ball and then flatten between your hands.  Place all the patties on the prepared tray and refrigerate for an hour so they don’t fall apart when you cook them.  If you’re in a hurry, you can stick them in the freezer for 15 minutes.
  4. Heat the oil and butter or ghee in a large skillet over medium heat.  Use less fat if you use a smaller skillet.  You want the oil and butter to be warm enough so that the patties sizzle when they hit the pan, but you don’t want them to be smoking.  Gently transfer the tuna patties to the pan and sauté until browned, about 3-4 minutes on each side.

Baked Chicken with Artichokes and Capers Recipe

Something tells me that you organized cooks out there are in the midst of planning your Easter and Passover menus.  Am I right?  My mom had me on the phone the other day trying to get side dish suggestions for her traditional Easter leg of lamb.  After I spoke with her, I took a call from my mother-in-law to go over her Passover menu.  This year we’ll be staying in California for the holidays and I’m on dessert duty.  I’ll be making lots of coconut macaroons, my traditional lemon ice torte and a raw cashew cheesecake that I’m obsessed with.  But if I were hosting Easter or Passover at my home (not that there’s anything wrong with lamb and brisket), I would make this Baked Chicken with Artichokes and Capers.

Normally, I don’t post a recipe until after I have finished teaching it, but I am just so excited about this chicken I can’t wait another day.  It might be my favorite chicken recipe to date, which says a lot since I prepare chicken quite often.  This dish has it all — great flavor, ease of preparation, healthfulness and seasonality.    But really chicken isn’t even the star of this show.  I actually came up with this recipe to work around one of my favorite springtime vegetables, artichokes.

I am going to cheat a little here.  There are times when DIY is the way to go, as in chicken stock.  And there are times when there is not enough patience in the world that could get me through trimming the number of artichokes it would take to fill this saute pan.  (Although I am the same person that trimmed 10 pounds of Brussels sprout leaves for Christmas Eve dinner.)  What’s different about this situation is that Trader Joe’s has come to my rescue with frozen artichoke hearts, an absolute gift and an affordable one, too.   Not only do I always have a bag in my freezer at all times, but the other ingredients here are pantry staples, too — capers, white wine, bay leaves, mustard, which are all delicious with artichokes.

You may have followed similar recipes for chicken and dredged the chicken in flour first before browning it.  The flour does help to the thicken the sauce a bit, but we can avoid the dredging altogether by adding the mustard to the sauce, which gives great flavor, as well as some body.  Be sure to read my latest post on the secret to great-tasting chicken and you can decide if you want to salt the pieces or soak them in a wet brine.  Both ways are very easy and definitely worth doing.  Please note in that post that kosher chicken should not be salted or brined since it has already gone through a salting process.  To make this recipe with boneless, skinless pieces, check out my recipe for Lemon-Thyme Chicken and follow those steps.

For a winner spring holiday lunch or dinner, pair this chicken with this asparagus salad or minted sugar snap peas, and some roasted new potatoes.  I have a seriously fabulous vegan and gluten-free coconut tart coming your way soon!


5.0 from 1 reviews
Baked Chicken with Artichokes and Capers
Author: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • Brine: (do not brine kosher chicken)
  • 1 cup hot water
  • ¼ cup kosher salt
  • 1 cup ice water
  • 3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons unrefined olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced or sliced (as you prefer)
  • 3 cloves garlic cloves, sliced
  • a big pinch of sea salt (or more if using unsalted stock)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ⅓ cup dry white wine
  • 2 bay leaves (don’t worry if you don’t have them)
  • 12 ounce bag frozen artichoke hearts or packed in water
  • 2 Tablespoons capers
  • 2 Tablespoons whole grain or stone ground mustard
  • ¾ cup chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, dissolve salt in hot water. Add ice water and check to make sure brine is cool. Add chicken to brine and allow to soak for 45 minutes, and up to an hour and a half. OR sprinkle ½ Tablespoon of kosher salt on the chicken when you get home from the market. Rewrap it and refrigerate it until ready to cook. (Do not brine kosher chicken.)
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove chicken from brine and pat dry with paper towels.
  3. In an ovenproof skillet or braising pan, over medium heat, add the oil. Brown chicken on both sides. Transfer to a plate and reserve.
  4. Add onions to skillet and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Add garlic, salt and pepper and sauté another minute or two. Carefully add wine to pan, and deglaze by scraping any brown bits on the bottom.
  5. Add chicken, bay leaves, artichoke hearts, capers, mustard and stock to pan and bring to a boil. Place in oven for 30-35 minutes, until chicken is cooked through, basting after 15 minutes. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley, if available.

 

 

My favorite tuna salad

Well people, sandwich season is upon us and I’m proposing that we branch out and see if we can avoid making peanut butter and jelly everyday.  In fact, I know many of you are in nut-free schools and can’t rely on the old standby at all.  On the other hand, luncheon meats freak me out a bit — and not for any scientific reason.  I just can’t get past the idea that this turkey was cooked who knows when and squished and reformed into this new product with lots of “natural flavors.”  I’d rather poach or grill organic chicken breasts and give the kids chicken sandwiches, which is exactly what I do and I save a little money while I’m at it.

As for me, I’m not much of a sandwich eater, mostly because I prefer to eat quinoa over bread.  But if I had to pick a sandwich for my last supper, it would be tuna salad with lettuce, tomato and avocado on whole grain bread.  If there happen to be some grilled onions lying around, I would add those in, too.  But this wouldn’t be just any tuna salad, it would be this one right here, which my kids also love — hooray!

I found the canned tuna of my dreams at Vital Choice — cooked once, BPA-free cans, minimal mercury and absolutely the best tasting tuna ever.   (It’s also one of the most expensive tunas out there.  Drat!)  Tuna is high in Omega-3 fatty acids (very anti-inflammatory and you’re probably not getting enough of them) and high in protein (so important when the kids are at school).  I mix it with some of the expected like a little mayo (I like soy-free Vegenaise), celery, diced shallot (I hate cutting 2 tablespoons of onion and then wrapping the cut onion in the fridge), a little lemon juice to brighten everything up and a touch of Dijon mustard to give it some zing.  But don’t get mad when I tell you I have a random secret ingredient.  My friend Daisy introduced me to Herbamare, an organic herb and salt seasoning, several years ago and my tuna salad peaked.  It just adds the perfect flavor to complement the tuna.  I buy it at Whole Foods, but you can also find it on amazon.com.  Otherwise, just use some sea salt to taste.

You can make your tuna salad the night before to make your morning easier.  Mr. Picky doesn’t like sandwiches (hard to believe, right?), so he takes his tuna in a (BPA-free) container with a spoon.  My teenage girls would please like a breath freshener in their lunch bags on tuna day, and that does NOT mean a sprig of parsley.  Got it.  Look out for more lunch ideas in a future post!

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
My Favorite Tuna Salad
Author: 
Serves: serves about 3
 
Ingredients
  • 1 6-ounce can water-packed tuna, drained
  • ¼ of a lemon
  • 1 stalk celery, diced, about ½ cup
  • 1 small shallot, diced, about 2 Tablespoons
  • 2-3 Tablespoons mayonnaise (I like soy-free Vegenaise) or half Greek yogurt and half mayo
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (optional)
  • ⅜ teaspoon Herbamare or sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Right in the can, flake the tuna with a fork over a medium bowl, at the same time allowing the tuna to fall into the bowl. Squeeze the lemon over the tuna.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well. Taste for seasoning.
Notes
Notes: other additions can include diced apple, diced sweet bell pepper, sliced manzanilla olives (the ones stuffed with pimentos), chopped nuts, chopped water chestnuts, fresh dill