Whereas I began the world of cooking with a dogmatic measuring of things and still adore measuring spoons and cups, at times I find myself more interested in just getting the job done instead of worrying about how much of this or that I put into food.
Sometimes, the amounts do matter, but not always. Sometimes, you just have to use intuition and play around with things.
So the word has centered around my famous tuna salad recently. Well, famous to local people in my family, I guess you would say. Maybe not exactly famous around the world. The Onyx Plate specifically was interested to hear how I make it.
This is what I put in my tuna salad:
- 12 oz. can of tuna, drained
- half of a medium onion, chopped finely
- half of a medium bell pepper, chopped finely
- two tablespoons of pickle relish or chopped pickles
- three tablespoons of mayonnaise
- two tablespoons of mustard
- two teaspoons of celery seed
- three teaspoons of garlic powder
- salt, pepper, and MSG to taste
Combine the ingredients in a bowl and stir well. Cover, set in fridge, and allow it to chill for several hours or even overnight.
Note that MSG is by no means a requirement. Contrary to popular myth, it isn’t damaging to your body. A little research proved to me that the people who reacted allergically to MSG did not do so when they ate food with MSG in it but didn’t know it was MSG.
Not withstanding, MSG is optional, along with salt and pepper.
You can also use less (or more!) mayonnaise and mustard depending on how much you like. Standard tuna salad sold in stores tends to have as much mayonnaise in it as it does tuna, but that would never fly with me. I don’t want my tuna salad too dry, either. You can always play around with it.
The kind of pickles you use will determine the flavors of the tuna salad. Do you prefer sweet, sour, or something in between?
You may also want to add more celery seed. Celery seed gives the tuna salad a certain punch it would otherwise not have. If you were to make chicken salad, celery seed would be indispensable.
Normally, tuna salad is eaten on bread or with crackers. Typically, eating it on toast is ideal. Ritz Crackers are always a good option.
So that’s my recipe for tuna salad. I encourage you to make it, try it, play around with it. Also, the proportions may be slightly off as I made the tuna salad the other day and mentally took note of what I put in without actually writing anything down. Happy eating it!
Also, as a bonus- you can substitute chicken for tuna and have chicken salad instead.
My mother, along with other people, adds things like boiled eggs and apples (oh, the horror!) to her tuna salad, but I’m not a fan of chopped boiled eggs in anything, and the apples in the tuna salad prompted the this particular blog on tuna salad.
So, here’s what I want from everyone: IF and ONLY if you decide to make the above recipe, I want your feedback on it. Let me know any alterations you made: let me know any additional ingredients, any subtractions, anything, and above all else, let me know how you enjoyed it!
Ready, set? GO!