It was a perfect seventy-five degrees outside, with just the faintest whisper of fall in the evening breeze. Turning on the stove was not an option, not with only a few more hours of sparkling sunlight left. Luckily, I happened to have a half baguette in the freezer, a load of market goodies, and a can of tuna on hand—but this was not your ordinary canned tuna. This was American Tuna, a brand comprised of 6 fishing families in San Diego who hand-catch and inspect their fish. As the company states on their website (www.americantuna.com):
All the albacore that we catch and process from the colder Pacific waters are specifically between the ages of 2-5 years old. Using the ‘hook & line’ methods allows us to monitor and inspect each catch. Mercury levels in such fish are at minimal trace levels, some non-detectable. The albacore we catch from the northwest has a very high oil content.
That’s my kind of company, and it’s my kind of tuna. A clean, pure, flavor unlike any other canned tuna I’ve tasted, and unmarred by worries of mercury contamination or environmental degradation. The sandwich was delicious, paired with a glass (actually, a paper cup) of Rosé and a gentle sunset in the park.
Serves: Makes 2 sandwiches
- 1 6-oz. can American tuna
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, plus additional for serving
- 2 tablespoons cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, plus additional for serving
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 small sweet or red onion, thinly sliced, rinsed in cold water and drained
- 1/2 French baguette, cut in half then sliced open horizontally
- 2 small handfuls organic baby arugula
- 4 slices heirloom tomato
- 2 hard-boiled cage free eggs, sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped niçoise olives
- 4 anchovy filets (optional), rinsed and patted dry
- Put the tuna with its juices (there is no oil or water added to American Tuna; if you’re using regular tuna, drain most of the liquid first) into a medium bowl and break up the chunks with a fork. Add the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to taste; stir gently to combine. Fold in the sliced onions.
- Line the 2 bottom bread halves with a layer of arugula, followed by overlapping tomato slices and a few slices of egg. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper over the eggs. Divide the tuna among the sandwiches. Top each with chopped olives and 2 anchovy filets, if using. Sprinkle a few extra drops of vinegar and oil over each sandwich, then top with the remaining bread.
- Wrap the sandwiches tightly in parchment paper; press down gently. Let the sandwiches sit for 15-30 minutes to let the flavors meld, just enough time to grab a blanket and get to the park.