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Tuna and White Bean Sandwiches

July 7, 2008

Tuna and white bean sandwich

This past weekend was my birthday, and as usual, I spent a lot of time cooking. Slow-cooked pork seems to be something of a tradition, and this year, I made al pastor-style pork for a Mexican feast. It was crazy delicious, and I promise to tell you all about it once I’ve recovered a bit. But today, still reeling from a busy, adventurous birthday weekend, I wanted something easy, and I hit upon what might be my new favorite sandwich.

About a year ago I read about making tuna sandwiches with mashed cannellini beans instead of mayonnaise, and it sounded like an excellent alternative: a little lighter, maybe, and I can never say no to beans. But it took me awhile to get around to it, which is unfortunate, because it’s a perfect summer sandwich. I know, I know, tuna isn’t perhaps the safest thing to be eating, but I love it, mercury be damned. And on days like today, when my house is so hot and steamy I can barely move, it’s pretty nice not to have to get anywhere near the stove.

I went pretty simple and traditional with this, but I’m already concocting some potentially interesting variations. As with any tuna salad recipe, you can kind of do what you like. If my basil plant ever starts growing, I’d like to try that. Some lemon pepper would be delicious, and there is a tiny voice in my head saying, “What about cumin?” The beans are great. They’re a little more earthy, and not as cloying as mayonnaise can sometimes be when it’s hot.

Tuna and White Bean Sandwich

Tuna and White Bean Sandwiches

  • about half a can of cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 can tuna, drained
  • 1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
  • 3 T. minced parsley
  • juice from half a lemon
  • a bit of salt and pepper
  • sandwich rolls

Mash the cannellini beans roughly in a small bowl. You don’t have to turn them into a paste or anything, and I liked having a few solid beans left in the mix. Then just stir in the tuna and all the seasonings. Add salt and pepper to taste, and you are good to go. This makes enough for about three small sandwiches or two bigger.

I know this isn’t a very exciting post, especially when I’m teasing you with promises of pork and tortillas and beans and grilled fish that we caught our very own selves. But this heat is pretty wicked right now, and I can’t bear to sit here in front of my computer much longer. A cold tuna sandwich and a glass of ice water are all I really want to concentrate on right now.

If anyone has any suggestions for great hot weather food, I’m all ears! And I’ll be back with al pastor by the end of the week.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Crimson permalink
    July 8, 2008 12:53 pm

    I absolutely love white bean puree (alas we do not have any kind of blender/food processor and pureeing by hand sucks).

    The only warm weather food I am making with any regularity is ice pops or fruit pops. I was given Popsicle molds for my birthday, and they are turning out to be one of the best gifts ever!

  2. July 8, 2008 2:32 pm

    Yum! This sandwich looks great! I love the combo of tuna and white beans.

  3. July 9, 2008 11:51 am

    Oh, that sounds good and will be great to break up the monotony of “salad for dinner” that I think I falling into. :)

  4. July 9, 2008 2:55 pm

    That is probably so much better than the “ice cream cake for dinner” habit that I am falling into.

  5. July 11, 2008 1:54 pm

    I love this! Just made some and added a few capers and a little minced red onion. Yum! Thanks for the idea!

  6. Katie permalink
    July 14, 2008 9:45 pm

    I just made this the other day and was so pleased with myself for being so creative! Little did I know it was a “thing.” My version used chili-garlic paste and some roasted red peppers pureed with the beans, and the tuna I used was packed in oil with ginger. Yum!


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