- 1 can (6 oz) top-quality solid packed white albacore tuna in oil
- 2 ½ Tbs Best Foods mayonnaise or to your taste
- ½ Tbs plain rendered pure chicken fat (schmaltz) or to your taste
- finely minced shallot (alternatively, mild white or Maui onion), to taste
- finely minced celery (de-stringed), to taste
- Wickles sweet pickle relish, to taste
- A large pinch of curry powder
- Dill sprigs
- Paper-thin slices of cucumber
- Thin slice of heirloom tomato, de-seeded
- Mix of grated Gruyere and Beemster Vlaskaas Cheese (my personal blend) or grated cheddar if you’re feeling less adventurous
- Romaine lettuce leaves
- Make the schmaltz by slowly cooking shredded chicken skin with a bit of oil, or buy some from your butcher – it is also sold jarred in many supermarkets.
- Drain tuna and place in mixing bowl. Break up and mash tuna with fork to remove clumps and make a spreadable consistency. Use a stirring motion to flake the tuna as fine as possible. Mix in the mayo. Then add and mix in ONLY enough schmaltz until tuna achieves a rich taste.
- Mix in celery, relish and shallot. Add curry powder. Mix again.
- The important part:
- Tuna should neither be flavored with either too much mayo or schmaltz. You shouldn’t be aware of any blatant schmaltz taste in the tuna.
- You can make a tuna melt that stays crunchy without the tuna getting hot by using my hybrid method.
- Butter one side of a piece of top-quality bread (I prefer potato bread (old-school!) or artisanal sourdough and occasionally rye), and brown that side on a griddle.
- Then put it on a rack in a sheet pan and top with tuna salad and cheese. Run it under the broiler and you have an open faced sandwich with a crunchy bottom layer.
- The rack is crucial, because if you just put the bread on the pan, the heat from the cooking can make the bread steam and get soggy.
- Add a few sprigs of dill, the tomato slice, cucumber slices and a piece of Romaine lettuce on top. Top with another piece of pan-griddled bread.
- Serve with a dill pickle spear and potato chips plus a side of good childhood memories.