Spicy Tuna Melt with Caramelized Onions
My grandma used to make me tuna melts sometimes as an after-school snack with lots of mayo and pita bread. She served them up with milk.
These open-faced tuna melts are also tasty and comforting but very different. This came together quickly using what we had in the kitchen. A baguette makes this seem like much more than a sandwich straight from a brown paper bag. The tuna is a little spicy from the sriracha.
But of course, all you see here are onions. Piles of sweet, sweet brown onions. Caramelized onions make everything better. The sweet and spicy mix here is good.
Try it! I had some habanero jelly in the fridge, so I spread some of that on the bread, too.
No milk for me with these melts. We had these for dinner with some whiskey.
spicy tuna melt with caramelized onions
- 2 pouches of albacore tuna (2.6 ounces each)
- 1 – 2 tablespoons mayo
- 1 tablespoon coarse ground mustard, plus more for spreading
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha, plus more for spreading
- a few scallions, chopped
- a baguette, enough for two sandwiches
- a couple ounces Gruyère cheese
- 20 or so pearl onions (any other onion would be fine)
- 8 shallots
- unsalted butter
- olive oil
Peel and slice the shallots. Blanch the pearl onions in a pot of boiling water. Let the onions cool before popping off the outer layers. Slice the onions.
Put about a tablespoon of butter and a drizzle of oil in a skillet on low heat. Add the sliced shallots and onions with a pinch of salt. Let them sweat for a while, up to an hour. The onions will get soft and brown. They get sweeter and better the longer you let them caramelize. If you just can’t take it any longer, throw in a big pinch of brown sugar to speed them up.
Meanwhile cut a baguette into two pieces for the sandwiches, about 6 inches each. Slice each piece of bread in half vertically. Scoop out some of the inside of the bread to make room for the filling.
In a bowl, use a fork to mix tuna, mayo, mustard, Sriracha, a drizzle of olive oil, and some pepper. Taste to see if you’d like to add more of Sriracha or something else. Mix in the chopped scallions.
Turn on the broiler.
Spread mustard and a bit more Sriracha onto the slices of bread. Scoop the tuna into all four slices of baguette. Top with slices of cheese. Cook the sandwiches under the broiler for just a minute or two to melt the cheese.
Top off the sandwiches with the caramelized onions and a garnish of chopped scallions.