While making this salad for lunch recently, my umpteenth time over the years, it dawned on me that I should share it with you. I suppose I had not thought to do so before because it never seemed like a real recipe as much as a quick assembly of random on-hand ingredients. But there is a formula to this favorite meal, one that allows the result to take on many forms.
Its single must-have ingredient is a high-quality jar or can of tuna packed in olive oil. The brand I typically buy is a seven-ounce Italian import, which runs about
$8. But before you balk at the price, consider the value: This one item provides plenty of premium fish for this salad for two, plus enough olive oil to dress it.
The big chunks of flaky fish get tossed with an assortment of crisp, colorful chopped vegetables, which is where the endless variations come in. The accompanying recipe represents a good sampling of the year-round basics: lettuce, bell peppers and cucumbers. But when I have leftover cooked vegetables – steamed broccoli, green beans, asparagus – they would get tossed in there as well (or instead), as might raw ingredients such as chopped tomato, radishes, kohlrabi, cabbage, celery and radicchio.