Okay: what do you think of tonnato, a creamy, tangy sauce made with anchovies, capers, and canned tuna? For those of you smiling—high five! And if your nose is wrinkled in disgust, hear me out. I was once in your shoes, but this umami-packed sauce is truly a cinch to make from pantry staples and tastes good on EVERYTHING.
This classic Italian sauce is typically paired with chilled poached veal (vitello tonnato) and served as a picnic dish. Sadly, I almost never have poached veal lying around the house, so after I blitz a fresh batch of tonnato, I pour it on crudités, hard-boiled eggs, sliced heirloom tomatoes, poached or sous vide chicken, or steamed vegetables. Or all of the above.
It’s seriously good stuff.
Here’s what to gather to make 2 cups of sauce:
- 1 (7-ounce) can tuna packed in olive oil, drained
- 5 anchovies packed in olive oil, drained
- 2 tablespoons capers, drained
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup Paleo Mayonnaise
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Dump all the ingredients in a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy. Done.
The sauce can be kept in a tightly sealed container in the fridge for a couple of days.
If you need more instruction and pictures before you’re willing to try this, read on, my skeptical friend.
Start by cracking open a can or jar of your favorite olive-oil packed tuna. Drain it and toss the fish in the blender.
Add two tablespoons of capers…
…and five anchovy filets.
Grab a large lemon…
…and add the juice (about 3 tablespoons) to the fishies and capers.
If you don’t have homemade Paleo-friendly mayonnaise in your fridge already, make a batch.
Then, pour in the olive oil…
…and a scoop of the mayonnaise.
Cover the blender and give the ingredients a whirl…
…until a thick and creamy sauce forms.
The consistency should be that of a pourable cream.
Taste for seasoning and adjust with additional lemon juice, salt, and/or freshly ground black pepper as needed.
Now go dip some veggies in it…
…or dress up a boring old chicken booby.
Doubters: Try it and let me know what you think.
Looking for more recipes? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPad® app, and in my cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel, December 2013).