Saturday, March 12, 2011

Carmela Soprano's Italian Tuna Salad using Canned Tuna


I know... 
it was a bother to make and the vegetarians in the family were giving you The Look.

The Look that Paulie Walnuts gives on a bad day.
A bad day for someone else.
You felt like you were Big Pussy on the boat ride.
The non-return boat ride.

Well, so much for the fancy shmancy dinners.

Last Wednesday was Ash Wednesday.
We're in Lent.
Time to cut back.
Time to trim the fat.
Eat simply.
Cook simply.
Hey, maybe Lent's a good thing.


In the Fit for a Bride chapter of Carmela's Entertaining with The Sopranos, Carmela prepares an Italian Tuna Salad. 

Sometimes I wonder about old Carm.
She has some weird ideas on what to serve at a wedding.
There was that Poached Chicken with Pesto incident.
Some whoopdy doo dish for a wedding.
Even for her sister-in-law, Janice.


Maybe it wasn't Carmela's idea.
Maybe she had a chapter on meals for Lent, or regular family meals.
Maybe her editor thought it wasn't fancy enough.
Maybe he just stuck them in this chapter.

Let's give Carm the benefit of the doubt, shall we?

Okay... tuna.  It's just about guaranteed you have a can or two on a shelf.  They're usually featured as a sale or a "buy 20 and get 10 extra airmiles" item.

Let's live off the hump.  


                        Italian Tuna Salad
                       
Serves 4 to 6
Steam until tender
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed, cut (or buy frozen) 
Place on a large serving platter
----
Top the beans with
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
3 celery ribs, cut up
1/2 small red onion, sliced
----
In a small bowl, whisk together
1/4 Cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
salt & black pepper to taste
---- 
drain        
2  7-ounce cans of tuna
hard cook 
4 eggs, then peel and quarter them
----
Just before serving
Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss well.
Scatter the tuna chunks and egg quarters over the vegetables.
Garnish with 
chopped fresh parsley or basil
Serve immediately.


Okay...  Like I said last week, Carmela can buy what she wants.
This week she called for imported Italian tuna packed in olive oil.
Okay...  I don't recall seeing that in the flyers or on the shelf.

Life is short.
Use what you've got.
We're living off the hump, not going on a food quest.


Would I make Italian Tuna Salad again?
Sure.
'Shoppers' has canned tuna on sale regularly.
So does everybody else.
With and without the airmiles.


Another recipe down.  Twenty-seven more to go.

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