As most people know, fish is one of the healthiest forms of protein you can eat with it’s lower calories and heart healthy omega 3 oils. What do you do when a family member won’t eat fish? Make something you know they can’t resist!
Most people will eat tuna salad……..even someone who hates fish like my husband. I’m sure it’s due to smothering the tuna in mayonnaise. You can’t even taste the fish! My challenge as a dietitian is how to reduce the mayonnaise and still make it taste good.
After using my husband as a lab rat, I’ve come up with the optimal tuna salad that will transition any family member into a fish eater………REALLY ! IT WORKS! Today my husband even tastes a little sushi every now in then, although he prefers his fish battered and deep fried.
First, what will every dietitian tell you to do to improve your diet? EAT MORE VEGGIES! Its the staple answer but it’s so true. Everything you need to survive you can find in veggies. Dense with vitamins, minerals and fiber you can’t go wrong! Plus, if you pick the right combinations they are super tasty!
My recipe starts with a bowl of chopped up veggies. Half tuna and half veggies to reduce the fishy taste and increase the health benefit.
I use an even amount of finely chopped onion, celery, bell or sweet pepper, zucchini or yellow squash and a few tiny chunks of carrot for sweetness. Add a can of tuna for 2 people, or 2 cans if you have more than 2 people. Add a heaping teaspoon of sweet relish, a dash or 2 of seasoned salt and pepper. Mix in a tablespoon of mayonnaise per can of tuna, or just enough to lightly cover all the ingredients. You can use your tuna salad on top of a salad, using the mayonnaise as the dressing, or make a sandwich with it.
How do you get your family member to the next fish eating step? Baked fish sticks are good, especially if you get the high quality version that has more fish than breading. The step after breaded fish is a mild fish like cod, orange roughy or Talapia and baked it with a heavy salsa or marinara. Sushi is another animal. When a non-fish eater realizes that raw fish doesn’t taste fishy at all (which it doesn’t) they may actually prefer raw tuna over cooked tuna! At least it worked in my home, with a lot of patience!