Serious Eats: Recipes

Dinner Tonight: 'Ino's Tuna with Black Olive Pesto Panini

There are few things in life I am worse at making than tuna sandwiches. What horrible curse was placed on me? My sandwiches either end up dry and flavorless or way too oily and heavy. I keep trying because, when done right, it's one of my favorite sandwiches. That has to explain why I decided to make this recipe from The Essential New York Times Cookbook, inspired by the West Village wine bar 'ino. Also, I'll blame the fact that I'm in the middle of a pretty intense panini infatuation. I don't know why.

Of course, this isn't a simple tuna salad. Instead of just mixing mayonnaise with tuna, you create a dynamic black olive pesto, which is spread on the bread right before it's grilled. The tuna is then spiked with capers, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes. It has flavor to spare. But the final trick that sends this sandwich over the edge is the panini press. Grilling the sandwich unifies it into one glorious, crispy package.

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