Wednesday, November 3, 2010


The very first time I had a tuna sandwich I was hooked. It became my favorite lunch, favorite sandwich, favorite snack, favorite thing to order at a luncheonette... I loved it! I was in my teens, and I quickly learned how to make it: Mix canned tuna fish with mayonnaise, chopped celery, chopped onions, throw it between two slices of white bread and you're in business. Being Greek, I soon started adding lemon juice, an ingredient Greeks try their best to use in every recipe, even if it's a dessert. I experimented with different breads, sometimes I added garlic powder (don't try it), sometimes I added herbs, but I never strayed too far from the original. Until I ran into a version of this recipe on the Simply Recipes web site. It's a little different from your basic tuna salad recipe, but it's full of good tasting ingredients. I still eat the original, especially when my mother makes it, but this version of tuna salad has won me over as well. To make it, I always buy Bumble Bee tuna packed in water. Then, I add a bit of good olive oil which helps all the ingredients fuse together better. If you make it, have it on a sandwich with lettuce and tomatoes, or eat it plain with out the bread. However, if you do choose to turn it into a sandwich, use a hearty, solid kind of bread. And please, enjoy it. It is really good!  I made this for dinner today, Wednesday, November 3, 2010. It's the day after Election Day. The candidate I supported, Joe Sestak for US Senate, who was the best man for the job, lost in a close race. I was very disappointed, especially since the winner, a man known as Darth Vadar Toomey, is more right wing than Metternich ever was. So I needed the comfort of a tuna salad sandwich for dinner. This nation that I love needs some comfort too. May we somehow come out of this mess, winners all.


2 cans (7 ounce), of tuna fish, packed in water
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
1/4 or maybe even half of a purple onion, chopped finely
3 celery stalks, chopped finely
2 tablespoons of capers
Juice of one lemon
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
1 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
lettuce and sliced tomatoes, optional
sliced bread, your favorite, lightly toasted


Drain the tuna fish and mix all of the ingredients. Serve on toast, with lettuce or tomatoes. You can also have it plain, open faced, or in lettuce cups if you would rather forgo the bread.


  1. Greek Girl from QueensNovember 4, 2010 at 7:21 AM

    Hi Ana! Welcome back - I've missed you and your wonderful and thought-provoking posts. I, too, am a self-confessed tuna enthusiast. My mom, being Greek, always added the lemon juice (I smiled when I read that in your post today), and a bit of olive oil in addition to the mayo.

    My dad, on the other hand, liked to mix in very finely chopped celery and onions, and, more often than not, to bulk out the filling, he would break up a piece of bread and add that into the mix.

    Be it either on white toast or, my favourite, rye (which is very hard to get over here in Ireland), with some lettuce and tomato slices, and a bit of coleslaw or potato salad on the side, and an ordinary sandwich was transformed into a heavenly lunch.

    I've never tried mixing in ricotta cheese, though. Sounds gorgeous, as well as a bit decadent! If I can find some decent ricotta cheese in the shops here, I may do a bit of experimenting in the very near future, thanks to your great tip.

    Again, welcome back. I've missed ya!

  2. Ana! I was getting worried. You have been so quiet lately, I hope you are okay. Sorry that your guy didn't win in the election. Hopefully the tuna sandwich went a long way to making you happier. It does look like a great sandwich.

    I wanted to say thank you for your help on finding a Greek cookery book, in the end I chose the Tessa Kiros one, which I will have to wrap soon as I keep taking a peek in it!

    Oh, and I tried a Greek wedding cookie yesterday after my friend went to a wedding and it was delicious. I think I may need to marry a Greek man so I can keep eating all this Greek food!

  3. In regards to the ricotta cheese, the original recipe that I found called for cottage cheese, but I am not a fan of cottage cheese, so I added ricotta. I assume that any soft, curmbly white cheese will do. Also, I have made this before by ommiting the cheese, and it was still good. I think the cheese might be added because the quantity of mayonnaise called for is small.

  4. Greek Girl from QueensNovember 5, 2010 at 8:01 PM

    I've been looking for an exceptional or better-than-average Greek cookbook. So, the one by Tessa Kiros is a good one, then? What's the title of this one, so I can have a look on ebay or The Book Depository (free shipping, worldwide!!). I'd love to be able to afford a big book with hundreds of recipes and great food photography, but I'm afraid it's just out of my reach, financially, so that's why I still haven't bought a really good one yet. I did find an excepptionally amazing one, called 'The Cookbook of the Jews of Greece' and it's not only got wonderful Greek and Turkish and Sephardic recipes, but also in-depth Greek history and beautiful illustrations, done by the author of the book. I highly recommend this book - even if you're not Jewish or Sephardic, these are Greek recipes from places like Ioannina.

    I'm going to definitely try to find some ricotta cheese in the shops, and if I'm lucky enough to get some, I'm going to try it with the tuna.

  5. I love tuna sandwiches...just had one for lunch actually. Your recipe sounds really good. Different ingredients than I put in mine, and it really sounds yummy! I'll have to remember this one next time I make tuna.

  6. Wow! My son would say "that is what I call a sandwich!"
    Dear Ana, please visit my blog, there is an award waiting for you. Thank you!

  7. Greek Girl from QueensNovember 25, 2010 at 1:55 PM

    Thanks for sharing this, as well as all your other recipes with us, Ana.

    Here's wishing you and your loved ones a wonderful, fun-filled, family-filled and food-filled Thanksgiving.