Chipotle-Tuna Melts

Life’s dotted with universal laws: what comes up, must come down; do unto others as you would have them do unto you and now here’s another one: everything tastes better with cheese. Don’t confuse this post as a PSA from the Dairy Farmers of Canada because last time I checked they were still running those Milk ads in movie theaters and as commercial breaks. No, this is a story of how one room mate introduced another room mate to the goodness a little melted cheese brings to a regular tuna sandwich.

Coming from an Asian household, cheese wasn’t something we ate very often unless there was a massive sale at a nearby grocery store. And when we did eat it, it was usually brick cheddar cut into slices and serves with bananas. You’ll have to ask my grandparents for the reason behind this as I still don’t know who in my family tree thought it’d be a good idea to combine chunks of cheddar with ripe bananas as a snack.

Since moving to Toronto, feta and shredded mozzarella are now staples in the fridge –definitely a benefit of living with two other people with European heritages. I’ll always be a harvarti boy but I can certainly live with an endless source of feta and mozzarella. So one day my buddy and I were making your run-of-the-mill tuna sandwiches when we decided to get a little creative. I suggested tossing in some diced onions and green bell peppers. My room mate tossed in some oregano, salt and pepper and gave it a mix.

But then he started buttering the bread; plugged in his George Foreman Grill; waited for a little orange light to disappear and tossed the bread on. A quick sizzle followed by the spooning of tuna mixture, a generous handful of cheese, topped off with the last slice of bread and we were well on our way to the best tuna sandwich of my life. If you’re an owner of a panini press or a George Foreman Grill, then this is a recipe that’ll go a long way when a regular cold-cut combo isn’t cutting it anymore and if not, don’t fret because a frying pan and a spatula will work just as well.

This recipe adds a south-western twist on an already great sandwich. The chipotle peppers add a warming touch of heat and when paired with gooey cheese and toasted bread it is a stellar combination that’ll keep those coming chilly days at bay. It’s also my last meat recipe until December the 1st as I’ll be going vegetarian for the month of November but more on that later in the week.

Chipotle-Tuna Melts

A BLT Project Original Recipe

-6 slices of white bread (sliced loaf, sour dough, country loaf)

-1 can of flaked tuna

– 6 (generous) tbsp of shredded cheese (mozzerella, cheddar, or monterey jack all work beautifully here)

-3 tbsp of light mayonnaise

-2 tbsp of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

-3 tbsp of diced red bell pepper

-4 tsp of diced onions

-2 tsp of room-temperature butter

-salt and pepper to taste

serves three people

1. Combine the tuna, onions, peppers, mayo, chipotle, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl.

2. Mix thoroughly and set aside.

3. Butter one side of each slice of bread. Plug in and turn on the panini press if using. If pan frying, place the pan on medium-high heat.

4.  Place bread on the press/frying pan butter-side down. Add tuna mixture, shredded cheese and top with the remaining sliced bread.

4. Close the press and wait 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. If pan frying, fry each side for 2 minutes.

5. Savour with some celery and carrot sticks and a cool glass of moo moo juice.


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Categories: bell peppers, Cheese, Recipe, Tuna


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