Spain-Catalonia Sandwich Recipe

Barcelona is the major city located in the ever expanding region known as Catalonia. Catalonia is the first tourist destination of Spain. The main tourist destinations of Catalonia are the city of Barcelona, the beaches of the Costa Brava at Girona and the Costa Daurada at Tarragona. In the Pyrenees there are 10 ski resorts: Baqueira Beret, the Molina, Espot Ski, the Masella, Port Aine, Vall de Nuria, BoĆ­ Taull, Port of the Comte, Flat of Peguera, Tavascan and Vallter 2000. Drop into any cafe and you will be able to order this outstanding sandwich.

Catalan Spanish-Style Tuna Sandwich

Makes 2 Sandwiches

1 can tuna fish (6 ounces), well drained

2 tablespoons finely chopped onion

2 tablespoons coarsely chopped red bell pepper

1 1/2 tablespoons aioli or mayonnaise

1 tablespoon cooked green peas (optional)

1 1/2 tablespoons chopped green olives

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

French baguette bread or roll

1-2 artichoke hearts (canned or bottled), drained and sliced

1 boiled egg, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds

Ingredients for aioli:

3-4 cloves garlic, peeled

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg yolk

1 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

3 tablespoons olive oil

For the aioli:

1. Smash garlic with a mortar and pestle (or against a cutting board using the back of a knife, or heavy knife blade) to make a coarse paste.

2. Add the salt and continue to mash the mixture until it is a smooth paste. Transfer the paste to a small bowl and add the egg yolk. Whisk rapidly by hand for 30 or more seconds, until the mixture is smooth and slightly frothy.

3. Slowly drizzle in the lemon juice, then the olive oil, while whisking. Continue whisking for another minute, or until it becomes a creamy sauce.

Store in a covered container and refrigerate until ready to use. The aioli will keep for several days. Makes about 1/2 cup.

For the sandwich:

1. Combine the tuna, onion, red bell pepper, aioli or mayonnaise, green peas, green olives, and black pepper and mix well.

2. Split the baguette or rolls in half and stuff with the mixture.

3. Top the tuna mixture with the artichoke heart slices and egg rounds.

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