Today’s post is another creation courtesy of the plant based cooking class I am taking. The activity inspiring the post was to create a salad using beans or legumes. One of the options was this delicious “Tuna-less Tuna Salad” that was made using smashed chickpeas and nori seaweed flakes to give the beans that “tuna” flavor. Presentation is a big portion of the grade for each assignment, and I knew I did not want to serve it as a sandwich or a dip. When brainstorming with the hubbs on how to be creative, he came up the genius idea to serve the tunaless salad in a stack just like the tuna poke stack he used to get from Yard House.
The ingredients for the Tuna-less salad are nearly identical to what you would find in your traditional tuna salad. You have your onion, pickles, celery, and mayo (we use vegan)…you know, the usual suspects. But where our delicious plant based salad differs is that we use chickpeas instead of tuna. To fishy-up the flavor, we add in some crushed nori flakes.
The salad preparation is really simple. First, yielding a potato masher or meat tenderizer, you take out any suppressed anger on a bowl of chickpeas. Repeat until you have pulverized them into mush and/or you are feeling liberated from the activity…lol.
Next you sitr in the veggies, nori flakes, salt/pepper, and mayo. Once combined, you will start to build your stacks. For each stack, you will need an exterior ring. You can use food stacking rings if you have them, but if not, just remove the top and the bottom off of a can or plastic bottle. I used Bai bottles with the top and bottom cut off because I broke my can opener while trying to use the bean cans (oh boy, was that a sight!). To build the stack, you layer avo first, then tunaless salad, and finish with the tomatoes.
The awesome part about this dish is that it comes together very quickly and is easy to make. Since you are presenting a simple salad in such a beautiful way, your family and friends will think you are a kitchen fairy with magical powers. These stacks will be a perfect addition to your Game of Thrones series premier party this Sunday. I am totally stoked Game of Thrones is finally back!
- 28 ounces, cooked chickpeas
- 3 TB red onion, diced
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- 3 pickle spears, diced
- 2 TB nori seaweed flakes
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- ½ cup vegan mayonnaise
- 1 Roma Tomato, diced
- ½ avocado, diced
- ¼ cup Tunaless Salad
- Smash the chickpeas in a large bowl until they are fairly broken up.
- Next mix in the onion, celery, and pickles to the chickpeas.
- Pour in the salt, pepper, and nori flakes. Stir to combine.
- Finally, stir in the vegan mayonnaise and taste for seasoning.
- To create the stack, you can use a food stacking ring or to DIY like I did, remove the top and the bottom of can or a bottle. (You will need one for each stack you plan to make.)
- Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- First, layer in the diced avocado. Use the back of a spoon to smash it down in the ring.
- Next, add a layer of the tunaless salad and press that layer down.
- Finally, top with the diced tomato and press down.
- Place the poke stacks in the fridge for 20-30 minutes to chill before attempting to remove the outer rings.