Meatless Fridays: Mediterranean Shrimp & Quinoa Salad/Cajun Tuna Burger

So I had my blog post all written and then I realized something. It was tuna. And last week was tuna. I don’t want you all to think Meatless Fridays is ALL about tuna. It’s just my go-to for quickie meals and lunches. So while I am going to post my original recipe which is what I’m having for lunch, I will also post what I am having for dinner. To get out the tuna box. Mind you…this is Mediterranean and last week’s recipe was too but that’s more a testament to the fact that I actually USE my ingredients until they are gone. I am many things peeps…in the position to waste food is not one of them!

This salad is made with quinoa. If you’ve never tasted quinoa you should. It’s not rice, it’s a grain and it’s a complete protein source (meaning it’s got at least 8 out of 9 of the essential amino acids in it). It can stand in the place of rice, couscous, orzo, or risotto in a dish. It’s got a different texture than rice or even wild or brown rice (it’s chewier) but it takes on flavors well, works great in cold salads and gives you a lot of fiber and protein for what you spend in carbs. So…without further adieu…

Nikki’s Mediterranean Shrimp and Quinoa Salad

1 cup of cooked quinoa
1 lb. shrimp, tails off, deveined and cut in half
10 grape tomatoes, halved
¼ c. chopped red onion
6-8 kalimata olives, pitted and chopped
¼ cup reduced fat feta cheese
½ cup Ken’s Light Northern Italian Dressing
A few shakes of oregano and dried basil
A bit of Parmesan cheese for the top

Basically you just put all this in a bowl, mix it up and refrigerate. The longer you let it linger in the fridge, the more intense the flavor. This is really filling and good to make in batches and eat on throughout the week.
Ok…so with that out of the way…here is the original recipe I was going to post.

One of my favorite things to make when I don’t want to fuss in the kitchen is tuna burgers. They come together easily (seriously…they take like 5 minutes to mix up a batch), are simple to cook and the only limit to the flavors is your own imagination.

I personally can’t do hamburgers (not even turkey…something about the coming together of ground meat seems to offend my pouch). I can do bites of a hamburger but even if I make a teeny one it doesn’t go so well. Tuna burgers give me the opportunity to sandwich something between two pieces of (low-carb, whole-grain) bread and eat it.
So for my offering today I present:

Nikki’s Spicy Cajun Tuna Burger

1 can of tuna (do not drain)
¼ cup textured vegetable protein (TVP), dry (if you are saying to yourself, “what is TVP?” click here)
1 egg white
¼ tsp onion powder
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp black pepper
½ tbsp Cajun spice blend
Optional: chopped onions or scallions

Empty the contents of tuna can into a bowl and add TVP. Mix well and let stand for a few minutes so that the TVP can soak up the excess moisture

Add all spices and mix well again.

Add egg whites and mix again. If mixture seems too wet, add a tablespoon or so more TVP and mix

Heat a sprayed skillet. Take up some of your tuna mixture and form a patty. There will be some excess liquid and the mixture will be somewhat loose, Trust me, it’ll hold together.

Place the patty in the skillet and cook about 2 minutes or so. GENTLY flip and cook an additional 2-3 minutes.

Remove from pan and serve!

I eat mine on a whole-wheat Arnold Sandwich Thin with shredded cheese of some sort (sort of a tuna melt type deal) but it is also good as a wrap and you can also make tuna “meatballs” if you are newer post-op and can’t eat a whole patty. I think it’d also be fun to do tuna sliders…but that’s because I’m weird like that.

One comment

  1. you can do the same thing with a can of Salmon or Mackeral. Been doing it for 40 years