The Perfect Salad (Chicken and Tuna Style)

I love chicken/tuna salad. Mom makes her tuna salad with relish, eggs, mayo, onions, Lawry’s, Garlic Powder and a little bit of celery. I love her recipe. It’s one of my favorite comfort foods.

I wanted to be more original and find veggies and new flavors. Here are a few suggestions!

Chicken Salad

If you have chicken breasts or access to a whole chicken (and the patience to clean the carcass), they make for the best salad. Canned varieties are okay, but they lack adequate flavor.

I had a lunch container with chicken from dinner last night and no fixins 🙁 I even got a baguette from Atwater’s. I had to do something for lunch. The salad bar at work has good variety so I got creative.

chixsalad1 150x150   The Perfect Salad (Chicken and Tuna Style)

Salad Bar Chicken Salad w/ Baquette

Salad Bar
I added marinated mushrooms and the three bean salad 🙂 Horseradish!!!





Apple Curry
At home, I made a version with apple, red bell pepper, curry seasoning, salt, pepper, and a little bit of mayonnaise. I ate this in some endive leaves 🙂 Mmmm 🙂

currychik 150x150   The Perfect Salad (Chicken and Tuna Style)

Apple Curry Chicken Salad

Tuna Salad

tunasld2 150x150   The Perfect Salad (Chicken and Tuna Style)

Tuna Salad Sandwich with Roasted Veggies

I made a tuna salad sandwich the other night with shredded carrot, ginger, leek, thai basil, salt, pepper, and a little mayo 🙂 It was a great main dish with the Carrot Ginger White Bean Soup 🙂

I’ve done tuna salad with my mom’s recipe, but I used wasabi mayo instead of Hellmann’s. So delicious!!


More than just sandwiches, you can eat your salad over crackers, endive, leafy greens, or all alone. I saw a recipe for tuna salad with hummus and tabbouleh. Mayo is not the most healthy condiment. Experiment with different flavors. Mash avocado!

How do you make your chicken/tuna salad?

April 7, 2011


Homemade Black Bean Burgers


After having a surprisingly delicious and homemade-tasting black bean burger (smothered in guacamole) at Brewer’s Alley in Frederick, Maryland, I decided I should attempt to recreate such a tasty burger alternative.

Then I forgot about it.

Until Whole Foods sent me my periodic email with recipes and photos in it, one of which happened to be for a black bean burger.

Here’s my recipe:

Serves 6-8

These easy-to-assemble burgers can be shaped ahead of time and cooked off when you’re ready to eat.


2 (15-ounce) cans no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained  **note, most beans are high in sodium (450+ mg/serving.  You can get healthier brands with 150mg or so for just a 20-30 cents more per can.. it’s worth it!)
2 eggs

1/2 c diced leek
2-3 cloves garlic, diced
1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs  (you can do these homemade by toasting and food processing your bread)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
a handful of fresh chopped basil
1 jalepeno, diced
Salt and pepper to taste

Rolls/burger buns/or serve over lettuce or greens
Hot sauce to taste
Endive (or lettuce), sliced tomato
Avocado mash/guacamole:  as much avocado as you want, mashed with fresh lime juice, salt, pepper, and garlic powder

IMG 0821 300x225   Homemade Black Bean Burgers

black bean burger patties


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a pan with
Drain beans and mash partially with a fork in a large bowl.
Separately saute garlic, leek, and jalapeno until leek in a little oil.
Add eggs, bread crumbs, oregano, basil, garlic/leek/jalapeno, salt, and pepper to the bowl.
Mix well to combine then shape into 6-8 patties.  (more if you are making sliders)
Line a baking pan with foil, and lightly oil the bottom.
Arrange patties, cover with foil, and bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until cooked through.
Transfer to buns, top with endives, tomatoes, avocado and serve.


The only thing with baking is that it doesn’t make the burger crisp.  You could probably pan fry them to get that texture.  I personally think we overcooked the patties a little because they were slightly dry, but they could have used a little tomato mixed into the burgers, which I’ll try next time, and maybe a little more spice/kick to them.

We enjoyed these burgers along side an old favorite: Broccoli and white bean soup !  (oh, and a Bloomingdale Cocktail)

IMG 0825 300x225   Homemade Black Bean Burgers

Black bean burger with broccoli and white bean soup


The original recipe from whole foods follows:

Whole foods black bean burger recipe/comments

As many of the comments recommended, I halved the amount of bread crumbs.
Rather than fry the burgers, I baked them.  Less oil, less crumbling.
Rather than mash the beans  completely into a paste, I left them partially-mashed, with some beans nearly intact.
I also didn’t add onion, but substituted leek as I almost always do.
The recipe says it serves six with one can of beans, but I used two cans (to make extras, great for leftovers) and got two LARGE burger patties and 4 smaller patties out of it.  I’m not sure how they got six from one can.. either they were more like ‘sliders’ or the extra bread crumbs did it.

March 29, 2011
Food, Recipe