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Tuna, Potato and Caper Salad

Insalata di Tonno, Patate e Capperi

Serves 8

Tuna packed in olive oil is used in many inventive ways in the Tuscan kitchen so, when I am with friends in Italy, I take my inspiration from them for dishes I want to prepare at home.

I enjoy the challenge of bringing canned tuna to new heights in my own kitchen too so I offer this delicious and easy to prepare tuna, potato and caper salad that is perfect for hot weather. It is best to make it several hours ahead of time to allow all the flavors to mingle well. Mound it on a nice platter or make individual molds using PVC piping, or another type of cylindrical form to create an eye-catching presentation.

Ingredients

4 large all purpose potatoes (about 1 3/4 pounds) scrubbed

1/2 cup finely minced shallots or onions

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

Two 6 ounce cans tuna in olive oil

1/3 cup capers in salt, rinsed, dried, and minced

4 tablespoons minced parsley

4 tablespoons minced tarragon

1 1/4 teaspoons celery salt

Grinding black pepper

Fine sea salt to taste

1/4 cup Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Cherry tomatoes for garnish

Directions

Boil the potatoes until a knife is easily inserted. Drain and allow them to cool. Peel the potatoes, dice them and put them in a large bowl.

Put the shallots or onions in a small saucepan, stir in the vinegar and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer the shallots until they have softened and all the vinegar has evaporated. Transfer the shallots to a small bowl and allow them to cool.

Add the shallots, tuna, capers, parsley, tarragon, celery salt, pepper, and salt to the potatoes. Mix gently to combine the ingredients well. Add the olive oil and mix again.

Transfer the mixture to a platter and garnish with cherry tomatoes. Serve at room temperature.

For an elegant molded presentation, divide and pack the mixture into 8 or 9 clean 3 2-inch pieces of PVC piping. Carefully place each on an individual salad plate lined with arugola or other salad leaves. Lift the piping off, and garnish each plate with cherry tomatoes.

This recipe is from CIAO ITALIA IN TUSCANY by Mary Ann Esposito, published by St. Martin's Press in 2003.

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