When summer rolls around, I tend to lose my appetite. Maybe it's because I tend to drink a lot more water, but I believe it is because the heat is usually so oppressive that the thought of eating registers at null. Für Sie, die nicht in Deutsch zu sprechen, null = zero. 

Come to think of it, there are many words that essentially mean zero that start with the letter Z. For instance, zip and zilch. Ok, maybe not many, because I am drawing a blank at this point.

Back to food.

On the occasions that I get the urge to eat, I usually go for foods that are light yet rich or savory, simple yet classic. Last night was such a night, and to satisfy my growling stomach after a long day of work, I put a pot of water on to boil and pulled out the ingredients needed for some delicious tuna salad.

Now, tuna salad means different things to different people. In my family, tuna salad always really meant, "Break out the noodles." What can I say? It's the Sicilian-Italian way!

Tuna salad is simple, because even if you make it in the bare-bones fashion, it still tastes delicious. Another bonus is that it usually only take 20 before it's making its may from the bowl to your satisfied belly.

  • Egg or regular noodles (Use small textured shapes; I do not recommend using spaghetti or fettuccine or any other long noodle)
  • Miracle Whip or regular Mayonnaise
  • Sweet pickle relish
  • Can(s) tuna, sealed with water (not oil!)
  1. Boil water. Add noodles and cook till al dente (I prefer them to be a little bit firmer, but I am strange that way)
  2. Drain the noodles. Here is where preference sets in: you can serve pasta salad hot, or you can let the noodles cool before mixing.
  3. In a bowl fitting your serving needs, mix noodles, tuna, relish, and condiment to taste. Some prefer a more "wet" tuna salad (meaning add more mayo or whip) or "dry" (less), and other prefers the relish to be either subtle or strong. 
  4. Chill your salad for one hour if you prefer it cold, or serve it hot out of the pot. Either way, it will be delicious!   
Now, if you are really a stickler about measurements, my general rule of thumb is that for every can of tuna, you can safely use 2 cups of noodles, 1/2 cup mayo/whip, and 1 tbsp relish. Again, this is one of those recipes that is better when you make it to match your preferences as opposed to following a recipe, because everyone differs in how they respond to a well-made (and for that matter, poorly made) tuna salad. You can also use this recipe as a template, and add ingredients like tomato, green olive, et cetera.


(Image: New York Times)