Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Tuna Sandwich al Taco



As a kid I never ate seafood.  The smell and look of salmon, lobster, swordfish, or whatever ocean / river / fish tank dweller my mom brought home disgusted me.  I used to get bribes to taste the fish -- $1 for a bite of salmon, $5 for a lobster claw -- but nothing seemed to work.  Except mayonnaise, carrots, and celery.  I loved Bumble Bee Tuna out of a can and mixed up into the most delicious tuna salad in the world -- my mom's.

With years came maturity and adventurousness and I started eating seafood.  I took the $5 bribe and realized I liked lobster claws, but not the tails.  A tuna avocado roll doused in soy sauce (now gluten-free tamari) and loaded up with pickled ginger was quite delicious.

Two sticky situations led me to try shrimp and salmon* and my expected reactions -- immediate hurling -- was dwarfed by the pure enjoyment.

Tuna salad will always hold a dear place in my heart at my fish-eating gateway drug.  Combining tuna salad into a taco?  Now that's pure genius.

Saveur's Taco Truck Tuna Sandwich
Taco Truck Tuna Sandwich

The olive oil, avocado, and cilantro will certainly make this tuna sandwich uniquely delicious.  It reminds me a bit of my Tunacado on gluten free bread from Joe & The Juice (@ 67 Spring Street) that had some aioli or sauce that made my snowy day pure bliss.

Although I have not yet vetted this brilliant creation, I doubt it will lead me to turn away from seafood. Or tacos.



*The stories of trying these two seafoods are quite hilarious in my opinion, so I wanted to include them.
Shrimp: While in San Francisco visiting my best friend from freshman year of college we went out for Chinese food with his entire family.  Given the plethora of wheat-based soy sauce based dishes on the menu, I was already causing quite a headache so when they ordered "shrimp in the gluten free white sauce", I couldn't interject with my hatred of seafood.  I mainly ate rice and tried to fish (pun intended) my way around the baby crustaceans until I realized one had slipped past my dexterous fork skills and landed in my mouth.  Well, rather than spit into my napkin I chewed and swallowed.  It was delightful.  A bit lobstery, a bit new and different.  Later I found out that those were pretty terrible shrimp so I knew that I was on the up and up.

Salmon: My best friend from college, Emily, bought me a cooking demo class as my 22nd birthday present.  One Spring night we ventured into a new neighborhood of Chicago to watch, drink and eat.  As we sat down in the open kitchen ready to see chefs at work, I saw some serious issues with the menu.  The two main dishes were pasta salad and salmon.  Knowing they likely did not have a gluten free pasta option, I started sweating trying to figure out an escape plan.  When the salmon was served I figured I could power through one bite and push the food around so it looked like I ate more than I did or pass it off to Emily.  Once again, my expectations were shattered and I devoured the salmon in minutes.

Conclusion:  Had it not been for my gluten freedom, I could very well still be a fish hating idiot.