Fancy Tuna Melts


  • 1/2 cup sherry vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 baguette, halved lengthwise then crosswise, toasted
  • 1 clove garlic, halved
  • Four tuna steaks (6 ounces each)
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup cornichons, halved lengthwise
  • 1/2 pound thinly sliced fontina, Swiss or Gruyère cheese
  • Grated peel of 1 lemon


In a saucepan, combine the vinegar, sugar and bay leaf; season with pepper and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the mixture over the onion, cover and let stand for 20 minutes. Drain.

Rub the toasted bread with the garlic. Season the tuna with salt, pepper and thyme. In a skillet, heat the EVOO, two turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the tuna and cook until just about opaque, about 5 minutes. Flake the tuna into chunky pieces.

Pre-heat the broiler.

Spread a light layer of mustard on each baguette slice, then top with the tuna, onions, cornichons and cheese. Place on a baking sheet and broil until the cheese is melted.

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