This weeks ‘nini is a tribute to the Tuna Salad sandwich made famous by The Cakery when it was on Foothill Blvd. in San Luis Obispo. The recipe below is a twist upon the original Cakery recipe and will require:
1 heavy duty food processor (we used a Cuisinart), 1 very sharp chopping knife, 1 can opener
Ingredients: 1 jar Domenico’s Sun Dried Tomatoes (available in the tasting room), a splash of Robbin’s Family Tuscan Blend (Ditto), 1 wedge of Manchego (Ditto Ditto), 1 head of fresh red leaf lettuce, 1/2 can of Embasa Chipotle Peppers, 1 jar real mayonaise (or an acceptable substitute of your choice), 1 loaf of Ciro Bread (Tri-Ditto), 6 cans of Chunk Albacore Tuna (in water), 1 jar marinated artichoke hearts, 1 jar roasted red peppers.
Start by placing 6 chipotle peppers and 1.5 cups of mayonnaise in the food processor and blend until integrated (see photo). Place the Chipotle-ed Mayo in a bowl and refrigerate for later use.
Next open the tuna and squeeze out as much liquid as possible before placing in a large mixing bowl (our method here was to place all six cans worth of tuna in a strainer over the sink before removing a handful at a time and packing it like you would a snowball until it stopped dripping). Once the tuna is prepped and in the bowl chop the artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, and bell peppers into small (quarter inch) bits before placing them in the mixing bowl with the tuna. Our preferred method is to mix in the veggies, tomato, and 1/3 cup of chipotle mayo by hand (we don’t mind slimy hands), but an equally acceptable (if a bit slower) method is to use a rubberized spatula in circular motion until you achieve an evenly mixed bowl of chipotle tuna salad.
From here it is your choice whether to eat the tuna on its own (delicious and simple) or add it to a salad or sandwich (we recommend all three!).
We chose to create a chipotle tuna salad melt. Our initial plan was to include mustard and manchego cheese on the sandwich but we found after attempting this that the tuna and chipotle overwhelm the manchego and mustard. We ended up placing the manchego on the side as a garnish to be consumed between bites of sandwich (the manchego we sell in the tasting room is spectacular!). We saved the mustard for a future concoction.
On the bottom slice we placed a generous layer of tuna salad (about 1 inch thick) before placing the top slice and grilling in a little olive oil. Once happy browning was achieved we added a dab of chipotle mayo and a leaf of fresh lettuce.
Ideal pairing for this sandwich is our 2009 Cotes de Paso or 2009 Syrah as both compliment the smokiness of the chipotle excellently (though it may not please our salespeople, this sandwich is also perfect with a nice cold beer…you didn’t read it from us!).
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