Quick ‘N’ Healthy Tuna Salad

Hi everyone. Checking in after another busy week. Seems like there is something that has to be done every evening. Not one seems long enough.

Yes, another recipe. Came up with this one last week for some leftover tuna salad. Chances are, it’s not new, although it is to me, lol. Sorry; no photo. (Shakes head.) I always think to share the recipe AFTER I’ve put together the dish.  (At least there’s no stove-time. :))

I usually stir a 6 oz. can of tuna with mayo, onion powder (no onion breath) and a little sea salt. I top a slice of toasted multi-grain bread with cheese and half the tuna mixture and serve  it open-faced with a side salad of baby lettuces. Low-fat raspberry vinaigrette and a sprinkling of feta cheese brings it all together. Yum.

Wasn’t in the mood for that combo, since I’d had it the day before–and I was trying to skip the bread.

So:

I took the leftover tuna salad, chopped a quarter each of a red bell pepper and cucumber and stirred all together with fat-free Italian dressing. (I was out of the raspberry vinaigrette and too lazy to grab the feta from the fridge. I also love being able to add an unlimited amount of veggies to up the fill-factor w/o adding a significant amount of calories. Next time too, I might cut back the mayo or just skip it. )

Done.

Ridiculously filling and satisfying to chow down, especially for someone—like me—who prefers eating with utensils vs. biting into a sandwich.

And yes, this can easily be used to fill a pita, curl into a wrap or create an open-faced sandwich as I usually do. I imagine you can top cold pasta with it too, for an impromptu side or main dish.

I’m also thinking chicken (grilled or canned) could easily be substituted for the tuna and that either or both would could be the basis of a great appetizer: as finger sandwiches or served in a bowl surrounded by crackers, toasted pita, etc. Heck: skip the meat or fish and serve the peppers, cucumbers and feta mixed with the dressing for a vegetarian spin.

What are some of the easiest and surprisingly tasty, satisfying dishes you concocted? Share them here or link back to your site. It all works and it’s all good.

Have a wonderful weekend, folks!

Joanna

Summer Tuna Salad Meal

Happy Thursday, all. Trying to stay focused and get ahead of my blog-writing game, but things get busy in my little home. I may also be offline for a few days but will try and get connected sometime. Please note: I am not ignoring anyone, just spending some dedicated time with my family.

Made this one just a few weeks ago. Such and easy fix, I had to share:

Summer Tuna Salad Meal (Sorry, no photo, but I promise this looks really pretty on any plate! BTW, this recipe serves one and is easily multiplied.)

One 6 oz. can solid white tuna (packed in water)

1 tbsp mayonnaise (adjust to taste)

Fresh basil leaves, cut into small pieces

sea salt

shredded cheese of choice and/or 1 slice American cheese

1 slice multi-grain bread (or bread of choice)

baby lettuces of choice (I love Aldi’s Artisan Salad package; only $1.99/pkg, but densely packed and always fresh. Not crazy for the plastic container, but I use those to store other veggies–i.e., zucchini blossoms,  iceberg lettuce, etc. I can also give my neighbors and friends cold leftovers and not worry about losing my better containers.)

salad dressing of choice

Wash and dry baby lettuces. Arrange on a plate, leaving room for a slice of bread. Top with a sprinkling of the shredded cheese and your favorite salad dressing. (Lately, I’m into raspberry vinaigrette, which tends to be fairly low in fat and calories, depending on the brand.)

Drain tuna and place in bowl. Add mayonnaise, basil and sea salt to taste. Stir until well-coated. Toast bread. Immediately top with cheese then place tuna mixture on top. Garnish with basil* and/or shredded cheese, and even a bit of the vinaigrette–yum!

There is something about lightly melted cheese and tuna that works for me. I like to eat this open-faced sandwich with a fork and knife. Using utensils fools me into not missing that second slice of bread and thinking I ate a more formal meal. Helps slow me down too, key to me eating less but feeling every bit as full. This ups my satisfaction big-time and all that protein in the tuna and fiber from the bread and lettuce keeps me from getting hungry for hours. (Convinced my younger son to try it this way—he was sold!)

*Although finely chopped onion tends to be a favorite in tuna salad, I find fresh basil adds a major punch of flavor—no onion breath either, lol.

What are some of your favorite simple recipes that eat like a meal? Please share! And if you’d kindly SHARE by clicking on one of the buttons on your way out, I’d greatly appreciate that too.

Have a wonderful day and weekend,

Joanna

Sunflowers and Home Fries

Happy Friday, friends! Hope you’re all geared up for a fun and/or restful weekend. Our weather  is promising much-needed rain, but so far the sun is having its way.

This photo is for writer-blogger Darlene Steelman (always a great collection of articles at her blog):

This recipe is dedicated to author JT Ellison over at Twitter (a.k.a. @thrillerchick)—she happened on one of my tweets and asked for the recipe. I am happy to oblige!

Joanna’s Home Fries (inspired by hubby*)—serves 4-5.

Sorry, no photo today–will post one as soon as I make them again :)!

You will need: 

5-6 large potatoes (Eastern or Idaho)

2 red, orange and/or yellow bell peppers (one of each works too, and makes for a very colorful dish)

1-2 large cloves of garlic, chopped or minced (optional)

1 large yellow (or Vidalia) onion

canola or olive oil

salt/pepper/paprika/Adobo to taste

Here’s what to do: 

Peel and rinse potatoes before cutting into pieces about 1-inch square (pieces this size cook faster w/o burning).

Wash peppers. Use a sharp nice to cut out the stem and empty the seeds. Slice into strips or cut into pieces, 1-2-inches long.

Peel and slice onion.

Cover the bottom of a large (12-14-inch preferably) non-stick frying pan with oil, but not so much the potatoes are swimming in it. (You’ll definitely need to use more oil–and/or add as needed–to a stainless steel skillet.)

Over medium-high heat, heat oil until one potato dropped in begins to sizzle as soon as it hits the oil.

Add the potatoes and fold until they’re coated with oil. (Add more oil as needed.)  Stir/fold potatoes as needed to keep them cooking evenly. (A silicone/flexible spatula is great for this.) Potatoes should progress from their creamy color to a pink-red brownish color—which would be about the time to add the cut-up peppers and onions.

Use spatula to carefully fold together all the ingredients. Continue cooking, folding mixture as needed so that veggies don’t burn while desired tenderness is reached. (Keep in mind that allowing the veggies to become blackened/caramelized will add some sweetness to your dish.) Add garlic at this point, and cook until golden. (Don’t let the garlic burn!)

Season with salt, pepper, paprika and/or Adobo to taste. If you used canola oil, you might want to top off the dish with a drizzle of (extra virgin) olive oil, but that’s it! Serve with fried eggs or as a side dish for pork chops, chicken—you name it. Leftovers heat up nicely too.

*For a slightly different version—my mom’s—substitute green bell peppers for those above. (You’ll need to cut pieces smaller or cook a little longer; green peppers tend to be harder than the red/orange/yellow variety.)  Skip the onion and add a clove or two of chopped garlic when you’re almost done cooking. Don’t let the garlic burn; unlike onions and pepper, burned garlic doesn’t caramelize. It just tastes bitter.

Next Friday I’ll be sharing my thoughts on historical romance author Mary Reed McCall’s The Crimson Lady, a book I thoroughly enjoyed. I have a few choices for earlier in the week so that one is up in the air yet. One last request: if today’s content spoke to you, please take a moment and click a SHARE button. Thanks so much!

Have a wonderful day and a great weekend!

Joanna

#FollowFriday? No, #FridayFrittata!

Happy Friday everyone!

Ash Wednesday set Lent in motion, so how about a meatless recipe? And in the spirit of Twitter’s #FF (Follow Friday) we’ll call this one #FridayFrittata.

As with all of my recipes, I try to keep things easy. I must say, however, this one might take a little practice to make the way I do. Trust me, experience is the only reason I can flip the thing the way my mom does, but there are ways around that (which I’ll share as we go).

So here goes Joanna’s Momma’s #FridayFrittata:

Ingredients:

4-5 medium-large potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes

3-5 eggs, lightly beaten (as if you were to scramble them)

Parmesan cheese*

Salt/pepper*

Parsley* (preferably fresh or frozen and lightly chopped—something about the smell of dried I don’t like)

Cooking spray

Oil (canola or olive)—enough to fry potatoes (I tend to be light-handed and fully coat bottom of pan)

How to put it all together: Spray the bottom of a large (12-inch) fry pan. (Non-stick is best in this case.) Cover bottom of the pan with oil; enough to allow you to turn the potatoes with a spatula and coat them lightly before you start cooking, know what I mean? Fry over medium-high heat, stirring and turning as needed until golden and tender as you like.

While potatoes are frying, prepare the egg mixture. Beat the eggs together with the remaining ingredients. Spread potatoes out so that they cover the bottom of the pan evenly. Reduce heat to medium and pour the egg mixture in, making sure to distribute between and around the potatoes.

Use the spatula to lift the sides and make holes to allow the egg to run to the underside.

Okay, the tricky part*: When the bottom is firm enough, cover the pan with a large plate. Hold one hand firmly over the middle of the plate and grasp the pan’s handle even more firmly with the other hand. Invert the frittata onto the plate. (The less-cooked top should be in contact with the plate.) Slide it back into the pan and continue to cook until the egg is done.

This dish tastes best served immediately but leftovers are yummy too!  Pair it with a salad, soup, toast or even pasta with garlic and olive oil for a light and tasty meal.

*Some folks skip the flipping part. (I just made a mess until I got it, lol.) Though I’ve never done this, another way is to take a large pie dish  and slide the frittata into that, uncooked side up. (Or simply start with a frying pan that has an oven-safe handle.) The whole thing then goes into a 400-degree oven for no more than 10 minutes (or until the egg is firm but not dry).

For a photo (not mine, but a good representation), click here.

Let me know how you make out! And if you like what you read here, would you kindly take a minute to help me spread the word and click one of the share buttons? Thanks so much!

A great weekend to all,

Joanna