The open-faced tuna melt is a beloved dish in the culinary world, known for its delicious combination of flavors and its versatility. This recipe has gained popularity among food enthusiasts and is often found on menus in cafes, diners, and seafood restaurants.
What is an open-faced tuna melt?
An open-faced tuna melt is a toasted sandwich made with tuna salad, melted cheese, and bread. It is prepared by layering a mixture of tuna, mayonnaise, and other seasonings onto a slice of bread, topping it with cheese, and broiling it until the cheese is melted and bubbly. This classic recipe typically includes ingredients such as tuna, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, celery, red onion, cheddar cheese, and bread.
To make an open-faced tuna melt, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 can of tuna, drained
- 2 slices of bread
- 1/4 cup of mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup of diced red onion
- 1/4 cup of diced celery
- 1/4 cup of diced pickles
- 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of dried dill
- 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice
- 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
Feel free to adjust the ingredients based on your personal preferences or dietary restrictions.
The estimated time to prepare the open-faced tuna melt is approximately 10 minutes.
Now that we have gathered all the ingredients, let’s move on to the preparation steps.
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
Step 2: In a medium mixing bowl, combine the drained tuna, mayonnaise, diced red onion, diced celery, diced pickles, garlic powder, dried dill, and lemon juice. Mix everything together until well combined.
Step 3: Place the slices of bread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
Step 4: Divide the tuna mixture equally between the two slices of bread, spreading it evenly to cover the entire surface.
Step 5: Sprinkle the shredded cheddar cheese over the top of each tuna-covered bread slice.
Step 6: Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and turned golden brown.
Step 7: Remove the baking sheet from the oven and let the open-faced tuna melts cool for a few minutes before serving.
Step 8: Serve the open-faced tuna melts as is or pair them with a side salad or some fresh fruit for a complete meal.
This recipe makes 2 servings, but you can easily adjust the quantities to serve more or fewer people.
Enjoy your homemade open-faced tuna melts!
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make a delicious open-faced tuna melt:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Drain a can of tuna and transfer it to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Use a fork to break up any large chunks.
3. Add 1/4 cup of mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons of finely chopped red onion, 1 tablespoon of minced celery, 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until well combined.
4. Place 4 slices of bread on the prepared baking sheet. Spread a generous amount of the tuna mixture onto each slice, covering the bread evenly.
5. Sprinkle 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese over the tuna mixture, making sure to cover the edges of the bread to prevent burning.
6. Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the edges of the bread are toasted.
7. While the tuna melts are baking, you can prepare any desired toppings. Some popular options include sliced tomatoes, sliced avocado, or a sprinkle of fresh herbs like parsley or dill.
8. Once the tuna melts are done, carefully remove them from the oven and let them cool for a minute or two.
9. Serve the open-faced tuna melts hot, either as a main dish or cut them into smaller pieces as an appetizer. They pair well with a side of mixed greens or a cup of tomato soup.
Enjoy your homemade open-faced tuna melt!
If you want to customize your open-faced tuna melt to suit your tastes, here are a few alternative variations you can try:
1. Experiment with different types of bread such as sourdough, whole wheat, or rye for added flavor and texture.
2. Add some heat by sprinkling red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce on top of the tuna mixture.
3. Swap the cheddar cheese with mozzarella or provolone for a milder, creamier taste.
4. Enhance the flavors by mixing in chopped pickles, capers, or olives to the tuna mixture.
5. For a touch of freshness, include sliced cucumber, baby spinach, or arugula as additional toppings.
Feel free to get creative and make the open-faced tuna melt your own!
Serving and presentation
To make your open-faced tuna melt visually appealing and appetizing, consider the following tips and suggestions:
1. Plate presentation: Arrange the open-faced tuna melt on a clean white or colorful plate to create contrast and make the dish stand out. You can also add a garnish such as a sprinkle of fresh herbs or a lemon wedge to add a pop of color.
2. Melty cheese perfection: Ensure that the cheese on top of the tuna melt is perfectly melted and bubbly. To achieve this, broil it in the oven for a few minutes until the cheese becomes golden brown and starts to bubble.
3. Toasted bread: Use bread with a nice crust, such as sourdough or French baguette, to add texture and crunch to your open-faced tuna melt. Toast the bread slightly before adding the tuna mixture and cheese for that irresistible crispy finish.
4. Artful arrangement: Consider arranging some colorful and crisp salad greens alongside the open-faced tuna melt. This will not only provide a fresh and vibrant element to the dish but will also add balance to the rich and savory flavors of the tuna melt.
To complete your meal with the open-faced tuna melt, consider pairing it with the following side dishes or accompaniments:
1. Tomato soup: A warm bowl of tomato soup complements the creamy and cheesy flavors of the tuna melt. The combination of the two makes for a comforting and satisfying meal, especially on a chilly day.
2. Sweet potato fries: Enjoy the contrasting textures by serving the tuna melt alongside some crispy and slightly sweet sweet potato fries. The sweetness of the fries pairs well with the savory tuna and adds a delightful touch.
3. Crispy green salad: Opt for a light and refreshing salad with fresh greens, cucumber slices, cherry tomatoes, and a tangy vinaigrette dressing. The salad will provide a refreshing break from the richness of the tuna melt and add a healthy element to the meal.
4. Pickles and coleslaw: For a tangy and crunchy combination, serve the open-faced tuna melt with a side of pickles and coleslaw. The acidity and crunchiness of the pickles and the creamy texture of the coleslaw will complement the flavors of the tuna melt and add extra dimension to your meal.
Creative twists and enhancements
Looking to take your open-faced tuna melt to the next level? Here are some creative twists and enhancements you can try:
1. Avocado and Bacon: Top your open-faced tuna melt with slices of creamy avocado and crispy bacon for a delicious combination of flavors and textures.
2. Spicy Sriracha: Add a kick to your tuna melt by mixing in some Sriracha sauce to the tuna mixture. The spicy heat will complement the melted cheese perfectly.
3. Mediterranean Delight: Give your tuna melt a Mediterranean twist by adding chopped black olives, diced tomatoes, and crumbled feta cheese. This combination will add a burst of fresh flavors to your sandwich.
4. Cheesy Jalapeno: For those who love a little heat, sprinkle some sliced jalapenos and shredded cheddar cheese on top of your tuna melt. The jalapenos will add a spicy kick, while the melted cheddar will provide gooey goodness.
5. Crispy Onion Strings: Take your open-faced tuna melt to the next level by topping it with crispy onion strings. The crunchy texture and sweet onion flavor will make every bite extra satisfying.
Best occasions for open-faced tuna melts
Open-faced tuna melts are a versatile dish that can be enjoyed on a variety of occasions. Here are some best occasions to serve them:
1. Casual Gatherings: Whether you’re hosting a game night or having friends over for a relaxing get-together, open-faced tuna melts make a great finger food option. They are easy to prepare and can be enjoyed without the need for utensils.
2. Quick Weeknight Dinners: When you’re short on time but still want a satisfying meal, open-faced tuna melts are a perfect choice. They can be assembled and cooked in under 30 minutes, making them a convenient and delicious option for busy weeknights.
3. Outdoor Picnics: Planning a picnic? Pack some open-faced tuna melts as a tasty and portable option. They can be made ahead of time, wrapped in foil, and enjoyed on-the-go. Plus, the melted cheese and warm tuna will be a hit with everyone.
4. Brunch or Lunch: Open-faced tuna melts are a great option for brunch or lunch gatherings. Serve them alongside a fresh salad or a bowl of soup for a complete and satisfying meal.
5. Family Game Nights: If you’re having a fun family game night, open-faced tuna melts can be a delicious and easy-to-eat option. They can be customized with different toppings to cater to everyone’s preferences.
Incorporating these creative twists and serving open-faced tuna melts in the best occasions will surely elevate your dining experience. Get creative and enjoy the flavors and convenience of this classic dish!