Healthy tuna salad recipe prepared the Mediterranean way. This mayo free tuna salad boasts tons of texture and fresh Mediterranean flavors. A zesty Dijon vinaigrette pulls it all together!
You see, the Mediterranean diet is not a fad nor is it so much a “diet,” as in, “I am going on a diet.” It’s a lifestyle.
It does begin with a balanced “poor man’s” diet that focuses more on grains; vegetables; dairy; proteins from nuts, seafood and lean meats, and far less on fatty meats. And yes, thank goodness, it allows a daily glass of wine!
But it is also a lifestyle that emphasizes daily physical activity, and a balanced social calendar with frequent meals in the company of family and friends.
If I really had to choose my favorite parts of a Mediterranean lifestyle, I’d have to say: fish and large family gatherings. According to the Harvard School of Public Health, consuming something like 6 ounces of fish each week reduces the risk of heart disease by 36%!
FOR THE ZESTY DIJON MUSTARD VINAIGRETTE:
2 1/2 tsp good quality Dijon mustard
Zest of 1 lime
1 1/2 limes, juice of
1/3 cup Early Harvest extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sumac
Pinch of salt and pepper
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, optional
FOR THE TUNA SALAD:
3 5-ounce cans Genova tuna in olive oil
2 1/2 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 English cucumber, chopped
4-5 whole small radishes, stems removed, chopped
3 green onions, both white and green parts, chopped
1/2 medium-sized red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved
1 bunch of parsley, stems removed, chopped (about 1 cup chopped fresh parsley)
10-15 fresh mint leaves, stems removed, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint)
Six slices heirloom tomatoes for serving
Pita chips or pita pockets for serving
To make the zesty mustard vinaigrette, in a small bowl, whisk together the Dijon mustard, lime zest, and lime juice. Add the olive oil, sumac, salt and pepper, and crushed pepper flakes (if using), and whisk again until well-blended. Set aside briefly.
To make the tuna salad, in a large salad bowl, combine the 3 5-oz cans of Genova tuna with the chopped vegetables,Kalamata olives, chopped fresh parsley and mint leaves. Mix gently with a wooden spoon.
Dress the tuna salad with the zesty mustard vinaigrette. Mix again to make sure the tuna salad is evenly coated with the vinaigrette. Cover and refrigerate for half an hour before serving.
When ready to serve, toss the salad gently to refresh. Transfer to a serving platter with a side of pita chips or pita bread and sliced heirloom tomatoes. If you like, serve a portion of the tuna salad over the sliced heirloom tomatoes. Enjoy!