Tuna Salad with Tarragon

May 14, 2013

DSC_0006Tuna salad can go, oh, so many ways: sweet, pickled, and crunchy; exotic, spicy, or unadorned; and augmented by macaroni, arugula, cottage cheese, or parmesan.

Whether you’re using Bumblebee or grinding up last night’s yellowfin steaks, tuna salad is—almost—as American as apple pie.

Tuna salad can be made with:

  • Miracle Whip—we swear!—it’s called “Tempting Tuna Salad.” (Find the recipe here)
  • Micro greens and black lava salt (here)
  • White beans and basil (here)
  • Artichokes and cilantro (here), and…
  • Sweet pickled relish, hard boiled eggs, and crab apple jelly (here!)


Tuna Salad with Tarragon

12-ounce can of your favorite tuna (we opt for solid white albacore)
Best Foods mayonnaise
French’s Classic Yellow Mustard
2 green onions
1-2 tablespoons capers (pickled in vinegar, not right off the bush)
Fresh black pepper (only fresh)
2-3 teaspoons dried tarragon
Lemon juice (optional)

Drain tuna and break up into bowl. Add heaping soup spoon of mayonnaise and a half a teaspoon of mustard. Mix and add more mayo until it’s the wetness you like, though remember that while chilling in the fridge, some of the mayo will be absorbed. Lay off adding additional mustard until the end, unless mustard is your life and you already know that half a teaspoon is not nearly enough.

Chop up green onions and add to tuna, along with capers. Mix thoroughly. Grind fresh pepper over the whole surface of the tuna, then sprinkle tarragon evenly over the surface of the tuna—not a blanket of tarragon, not that thick, but like new grass seedlings starting to grow and sprouting their green stalks. Mix thoroughly. Taste.

Add more of any ingredient, including a smidgen of lemon juice, if desired. Some people like a lot of mustard, others the saltiness from the capers. We like it pretty evenly balanced, though we always find ourselves grinding a little more pepper and sprinkling on a little extra tarragon. Mix and refrigerate.

Do not serve immediately. If at all possible, make tuna salad ahead of time so it can sit in the fridge and have time for the flavors to mix and flourish. Adjust seasonings before serving, if necessary. More tarragon!

Yellowfin tuna steaks; photo courtesy of

Yellowfin tuna steaks; photo courtesy of




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