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~ Avocado Cups Filled w/Asian-Twisted Tuna Salad ~

IMG_7925My longtime girlfriend and fellow foodie Patricia told me about this recipe this past Saturday. Whenever we two get-together for a cocktail, a portion of the conversation always revolves around food, local foodie news, and, what we've been cooking in our two kitchens.  We know each others foodie likes and dislikes inside and out.  We agree on almost all things foodie, and even when we don't, we disagree with pause, because we know it's just a matter of personal taste.  Pat noticed a bowl of avocados on my countertop and told me about a "spoofy little avocado-tuna salad" she's become addicted to.  Whenever Pat says, "Mel I know your gonna love this", I proceed to giving whatever it is a try at the earliest possible date.  Today is that date!

IMG_7903I did give the original recipe a "tweeking", and, after Pat reads my thought process, I don't think she is going to have a problem with it. The original, from a cookbook she owns, used diced red onion and jalapeno pepper, and, none of the flavorful lime zest.  I chose to use green onion, wasabi paste and all of the zest, because I wanted a clean sweep of authentic Asian flavor throughout.   I mixed my wasabi and lime zest with the mayo to concoct:

Wasabi-Lime Mayonnaise!

If you're a lover of Asian flavors, avocado & tuna salad...

... don't wait 10 minutes to try this 10-minutes-to-make meal!

IMG_78851  12 1/2-ounce can solid white tuna, packed in water, well-drained and broken into chunks, your favorite brand (2 cups of chunked tuna) (Note:  It goes without saying that if you have some leftover rare-grilled Ahi tuna, it would be a fabulous substitution in this recipe.)

1  cup peeled, seeded and diced 'seedless' cucumber

1/3  cup very-thinly sliced green onion, white and light green part only (5-6 tablespoons), reserve green tops for garnish 

1/4  cup minced cilantro leaves, no stems included

3  tablespoons mayonnaise

1-2  tablespoons wasabi paste, more or less, to taste (Japanese horseradish)

zest & juice of 1 lime, add 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice to the tuna salad & reserve the rest

1  tablespoon Thai seasoning soy sauce

1/4-1/2  teaspoon sugar (optional) (Note:  Pat likes it without, I like it with.)

1  teaspoon toasted sesame seeds

3  ripe Hass avocados, sliced in half and pitted, to form 6 avocado cups

freshly ground sea salt

additional toasted sesame seeds, for garnish

very-thinly sliced green onion tops, for garnish

Thai pickled ginger, for accompaniment (optional)

IMG_7898 IMG_7893~ Step 1.  In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise and 1 tablespoon of Wasabi paste. Continue adding Wasbi paste until you get a zippy tang that suites you.

6a0120a8551282970b0192aa3a7bfd970d-320wiZest and juice the lime.  Add the zest to the mayo mixture.  Set juice aside.

IMG_7918 IMG_7910~ Step 2. Prep and place all ingredients (except for the avocados and garnishes) in a large bowl as you work.  Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold until mixture is thoroughly combined, being careful to keep the tuna in large chunks.  Transfer to a food storage container, cover and refrigerate, 1-2 hours or overnight.

PICT4952~ Step 3.  Slice the avocados from pole to pole (lengthwise around the perimeter).  Give the two halves a gentle twist, to separate them.  The pit (which in reality is a seed that can be planted to grow an avocado tree and is another blog post) is easily removed by holding the pitted half of the avocado securely in the palm of your hand.  Using a chef's knife, give the pit a somewhat forceful tap with the center of the knife blade.  Then, one gentle twist of the knife and voila:  the pit is out.

~ Step 4.  Do not remove the peel from the avocados.  Place the "avocado cups" on six plates. Paint the tops with the remaining lime juice and top with a VERY light grinding of sea salt. Portion 1/2 cup of chilled tuna salad on top of each.  Garnish with a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onion tops.  Enjoy a most delightful, refreshing Summertime lunch.

'Avocado green' never tasted so good!

IMG_7930Avocado Cups Filled w/Asian-Twisted Tuna Salad:  Recipe yields 3 cups of tuna salad and 6 servings.

Special Equipment List:  colander (for draining tuna); cutting board; chef's knife; microplane grater; large rubber spatula; 1-quart size food storage container w/tight fitting lid; pastry brush

IMG_4783Cook's Note:  Much like its cousin egg salad, tuna salad is often referred to as the "mainstay of everyones childhood" or the "lunch staple of the office generation". Almost all of us can relate to that!

My recipe for ~ Creamy, Chunky & Crunchy "Classic" Tuna Salad ~ is in Categories 2, 14, 20, and, to get my recipe for ~ Simplicity: Creamy, Crunchy "Classic" Egg Salad ~ just click on the Related Article link below! 

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2013)


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