Mock-Tuna Chickpea Salad Sandwich

As a longtime vegetarian, people sometimes ask me what I miss the most about my meat-eating days.  It’s an easy answer.  I miss turkey sandwiches…and seafood.  All seafood.  Shrimp, lobster, clam strips, scallops, swordfish, steamers, haddock, salmon…and yes,  tuna fish. 

A few years ago I heard about a “mock” tuna salad recipe using mashed chickpeas.  It’s eerie, but the chickpeas do have a bit of a tuna taste and aroma.  You wouldn’t mistake it for the real thing, but it’s still delicious.  I have updated the recipe over the years to suit my taste based on the way I used to make tuna salad.

The basics are chickpeas (aka garbanzos), mayo, spicy mustard, celery, and red onion.

Mix everything together and then get out the potato masher to break down the chickpeas.  You can mash them first if you want, or pulse them a few times in a food processor, but I like mashing everything together the old-fashioned way.

Once the consistency is to your liking, get your bread of choice, lettuce, and potato chips ready.

Yes, I said potato chips.  For saltiness and crunchy texture, I love a few kettle-cooked potato chips on this kind of “salad” sandwich.

Not too many, mind you, and make sure you press down on the top slice of bread a bit to break the chips before you bite.

Then, my friends, you are ready to eat a mock-tuna salad sandwich.  The chickpeas lend a hearty, nutty flavor while the mustard gives it a kick.  The celery, onions, and potato chips provide the crunch.  You bring the appetite.

Mock-Tuna Chickpea Salad

1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas/garbanzos, drained
2 celery ribs, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
2 Tbsp. mayonnaise (I use a light version)
2 Tbsp. spicy brown mustard

Combine all ingredients and mash the chickpeas with a potato masher or fork.

I suggest enjoying chickpea salad on a bed of lettuce, topped with potato chips.  I am sure, however, that it would taste just as great if you made substitutions based on however you normally enjoy tuna salad.

Print Version

Caprese Sandwich

Now that we are finally enjoying some beach and picnic weather, I thought it would be a good time to celebrate that most famous of portable meals…the sandwich!

Are you a sandwich fan?  Of course you are.  The beautiful thing about sandwiches is that they are for everyone – young or old, rich or poor, peckish or famished.  Whatever or whoever you are, right now there is a sandwich with your name on it.

Not sure what you’re in the mood for?  I suggest you peruse the informative, entertaining, and beautifully photographed new book “The Encyclopedia of Sandwiches” by Susan Russo, with photos by Matt Armendariz.

Susan  pens terrific the Food Blogga and also writes for NPR Kitchen Window while Matt was one of the wonderful and seriously talented speakers I met when I attended Food Blog Camp in Mexico.

This book is right up my alley…portable, crammed with historical fun facts, full of bright photos, and inspiring enough to make me hungry.  It covers the basics (peanut butter and jelly, egg salad, grilled cheese, hamburger), the adventurous (egg and pepper, Spamwich, prosciutto and fig, Dagwood), the mysterious (muffuletta, Croque Monsieur, Bánh Mi, Jucy Lucy) and the just plain magnificent (banana split, baked bean, frittata, ice cream).

I was only on the C’s when I started making my grocery list. 

Behold my first EOS-inspired lunch – the Caprese sandwich!  It couldn’t be simpler, but simple is all you need for one seriously delicious sandwich.

Split a crusty baguette and layer on the plum tomatoes.

Add some fresh mozzarella.

Then fresh basil, salt, pepper, and drizzle of olive oil.

Pick your beautiful creation up…

…then close your eyes and experience sandwich heaven in the form of juicy tomatoes, creamy mozzarella, and aromatic basil.

Within a crusty baguette, of course.  This is a sandwich, after all.

I can’t wait to eat these all summer with fresh tomatoes.

Are you thinking about your favorite sandwich now?  What is it?

Stay tuned for more of my favorite sandwiches this summer!

The kind folks at Quirk books sent me a copy of The Encyclopedia of Sandwiches to review, but as always, all opinions expressed are entirely my own!