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Recipe: Tuna & Cannellini Bean Salad

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During the summer months, the last thing I want to do is turn on the oven or stove any more than I have to. I turn to salads during the hot months because I love to take advantage of all the fresh summertime produce available at the market. I also make sure my pantry is always stocked with basic ingredients that can be used a variety of ways, like tuna and beans. Tuna and Cannellini Bean Salad is one of my favorite summertime meals. Canned tuna and cannellini beans are always in my pantry, so I can prepare this salad whenever I want a satisfying lunch that is quick, light, and healthy. If you have never tried tuna packed in olive oil, you are in for a delicious treat. It is rich, flavorful, and moist. It is definitely the star of this salad. Olive oil-packed tuna used to be hard to find, but now it is available in most grocery stores. Canned cannellini beans are another ingredient I always have on hand because they are such a versatile ingredient. Not only do I add them to salads, I also add them to soups, stews, and side dishes.

Tuna and Cannellini Bean Salad

This salad is a lighter alternative to the more traditional mayonnaise-based tuna salad. The celery and onion add crunch while the parsley adds a bright, fresh flavor. The vinegar may seem like an odd ingredient, but the acidity adds a subtle tang that cuts through the richness of the olive oil and balances out all of the flavors. Allowing the salad to rest for about half an hour in the refrigerator before serving lets all the flavors blend together. This Tuna and Cannellini Bean salad is wonderful as is, but it can also be served in lettuce cups for a fun presentation. Be sure to have some fresh, crusty bread or an assortment of crackers to serve alongside this salad, and you have a light and refreshing meal that is perfect for these hot days of summer.

Tuna & Cannellini Bean Salad

Ingredients:

1 5 oz. can tuna (packed in olive oil)
1 15 oz. can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 celery ribs, small dice (about 1/3 cup)
2 Tablespoons diced red onion
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar

Directions:

Empty the tuna into a medium bowl making sure to also add the olive oil it is packed in. Add in the beans, celery, onion, and parsley. Toss gently with a fork to combine. Add in the salt, pepper, olive oil, and vinegar and toss again to incorporate. Taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Do you incorporate tuna into your summer meals? What are your favorite cool dishes?

Flavia Scalzitti is a food blogger based in Houston, Texas. She is originally from Maryland and comes from an Italian family. Flavia grew up around people who used food and cooking as a way to keep their traditions alive, celebrate their Italian culture, express their love for their family, and nourish the people they cooked for with the freshest and best quality ingredients. She is entirely self-taught and is also passionate about baking. In addition to cooking and baking, Flavia enjoys learning about and practicing photography, reading, traveling, practicing yoga, and spending time with her husband, Peter. She blogs at Flavia's Flavors: http://www.flaviasflavors.com

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