Tuna Salad with Peppers, Green Beans and Zucchini

  • Active Time 25m
  • Total Time 40m

Serves 6-8

Most casual Italian dining spots offer a rendition of the ubiquitous tuna salad among their antipasti. Although it is common for Italian cooks to rely on canned tuna for these creations, here grilled fresh tuna is used. The salad is delicious eaten right away or marinated for up to 24 hours.

ingredients

  • 2 large, firm yellow bell peppers
  • 2/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh oregano or 2 teaspoons dried oregano, crumbled
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Ice water
  • 1/4 pound small, tender green beans, ends trimmed
  • 2 small, firm zucchini , cut in half crosswise, then cut lengthwise into thin strips
  • 1/2 pound tuna fillet, cut into thin slices
  • Olive oil for brushing
  • 10 round or pear-shaped cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
  • 2 teaspoons capers, rinsed and drained

directions

Preheat a broiler or preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.

Arrange the peppers on a baking sheet and place in the broiler or oven. Broil or bake, turning as necessary, until the skin is charred and blistered on all sides. Alternatively, one at a time, using tongs or a fork, hold the peppers over a gas flame until charred and blistered. Immediately place the peppers in a bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let steam until cool, about 15 minutes.

Using your fingers, peel off the charred skin, then pull out and discard the stem and seeds. Cut in 1/2 lengthwise and trim away any seeds and tough white ribs. Cut each pepper lengthwise into thin strips.

Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a ridged stove-top griddle until very hot.

In a small bowl, whisk together the 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice, oregano, garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Bring a saucepan 3/4 full of lightly salted water to a boil. Have ready a large bowl 3/4 full of ice water. Add the green beans to the boiling water, blanch for 1 minute, then drain and plunge them into the ice water to stop the cooking and preserve the color. Transfer to a colander to drain well. Set aside.

In a sauté pan over medium heat, warm the 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil. Add the zucchini and sauté, stirring occasionally and regulating the heat so that the strips do not burn, until tender and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain briefly.

Lightly brush the tuna slices with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Place the tuna on the grill rack about 8 inches above the fire or on the griddle. Cook, turning once, until firm and cooked through, about 3-5 minutes total. Remove from the rack or griddle. When cool enough to handle, gently break into large pieces.

In a large bowl, combine the bell peppers, green beans, zucchini, tomatoes, basil and capers. Whisk the dressing briefly, then drizzle over all. Toss gently to coat the vegetables evenly. Add the tuna and toss again gently to mix. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Weldon Owen. All rights reserved.

RecID 764

nutrition information per serving

260 calories; 23g total fat; 13mg cholesterol; 42mg sodium; 9g carbohydrates; 2g fiber; 8g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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