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  • Tuna Melts
  • Tuna Melts
  • Tuna Melts

Tuna Melts

Food | March 07, 2017 | Nik Manojlovich
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Lightly buttered toast with thin-sliced heirloom tomato, and a dollop of creamy tuna salad topped with Swiss cheese – these TUNA MELTS rule!

If you’re the person planning the menus for a busy household, or if you like to entertain a lot, this TUNA MELTS recipe is a keeper. I like to make it for a delicious meal at a moment’s notice.

This recipe also gets my seal of approval for being one of my easiest make-ahead dishes. The tuna salad can be made the night before or just a few hours ahead of mealtime, and then be amazed at how quick you can pull everything together. It truly is one of my favourites.

Here’s how to make yours like a pro:

1) BREAD – Everything and anything works, from bagels, Kaiser rolls or rye to muesli loaf, flat bread and baguettes. The only thing to keep in mind is your need to toast, then lightly butter the bread before you add the filling, so toaster-friendly sliced options are easiest.

2) TOMATOES – I used a plump, juicy red heirloom when creating this because my vegetable girl said it was the most flavourful she had available. If you’re making this during summer months, I’m hoping you have a homegrown, vine-ripened beauty that you can just pluck and use. It will be perfect.

3) TUNA SALAD – This tuna salad is delicious, but also looks good too. Having the scallions, celery, pepper and dill is a wicked colour combination, but those same ingredients each add a distinct flavour to the sandwich. Stirring them together with a dollop of hummus – who knew – adds an unexpected nuttiness that pairs well with the cheese.

4) CHEESE – I use Swiss cheese, because, um… I like it?! No other reason! So that opens the door for you to try different flavours with cheddar, mozzarella, gouda and so on. I’d stay away from robust cheeses like blue and stilton – the melt’s strong suit is its subtle flavours.

Final thought is a suggestion on what to serve with it, and for me there is but one choice – bread and butter pickles! There’s something about the pickled sweetness of these wonders, and if you can score a jar of homemade ones, you’re in for a real treat. They play so well with the TUNA MELTS.

This classic lunch offering is ready in just moments, especially if you follow our suggestion of preparing it as a make-ahead meal. TUNA MELTS might just melt your heart!

Ingredients & Amounts

  • For the tuna salad:
  • 1 can of water-packed flaked tuna, drained
  • 1 rib of celery, diced
  • 2 scallions, diced
  • ¼ of a red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/3 cup of mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup of hummus
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • For the open-faced sandwiches:
  • slices of bread or fresh-baked buns, toasted and buttered
  • slices of heirloom tomatoes
  • slices of Swiss cheese, 1 per sandwich
  • butter, room temperature - for toasted bread or buns

Instructions

  1. Make-ahead: Place all of the ingredients for the tuna salad into a medium-sized bowl and stir together. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until use.
  2. Assemble sandwiches: Toast and lightly butter your bread of choice. Add a thin slice of tomato onto each. Using an ice cream scoop or spoon, add a dollop of tuna salad and spread it evenly across the surface of the tomato. Top each open-faced sandwich with a slice of Swiss cheese.
  3. Place assembled sandwiches on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Turn oven on to the broil setting and place baking sheet under broiler, watching closely as cheese melts to desired doneness. Transfer to luncheon sized plates and serve immediately with bread and butter pickles or a simple side salad.
Listen on MUSIC

Listening to great music is an important part of every Weekend at the Cottage! This week I’m recommending an album I recently heard featured on CBC Radio 2. Her name is Jenn Grant and man, does she ever have a wonderful voice. The fact that she’s writing her own music is just the icing on the cake! Head to iTunes to download Jenn Grant – Compostela to your collection.

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Nik Manojlovich

Nik is the creator, host and brains behind Weekend at the Cottage. He loves sharing his wisdom and experience about the things that interest him most.

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