I used to be a pescatarian before changing to vegan. In case your wondering, a pescatarian is someone who doesn’t eat meat except for fish. My favorites used to be barramundi, tilapia, salmon, and tuna. Its been a long time but frankly I don’t miss it, especially with so many disastrous oil spills we keep hearing about on the news and especially after Fukushima.
Considering all the horrifying contamination events to our oceans just in the past 5 years, I’ll probably never want to eat fish ever again. Everything fish eat, we eat, and the bigger they grow, the bigger the contamination we are exposed to. Shunichi Tanaka, the head of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority said radioactive water has been leaking into the Pacific Ocean since the March 2011 earthquake. The disaster has been reported as “the largest single contribution of radionuclides to the marine environment ever observed.” Today over 4 years later, TEPCO has still yet to gain control.
What is the FDA doing to screen for radiation? As of March 10th 2014, the FDA included about 225 seafood samples to monitor for Fukushima contamination and stated Cesium levels were well below the established “standards.” Basically, they concluded there were no public health concerns but do we really want to gamble our health based on random samples?? Probably the biggest question to ask ourselves is can we really trust the FDA and their findings, especially when other sources have reported otherwise. An article from 2 years ago reported that every Bluefin tuna tested off the coast of California was contaminated with Fukushima radiation. Every single one! So no, I don’t trust the FDA.
Ok, enough bad news and on to some good food news. I’m not one to brag but I have to admit, this “tuna” recipe came out great! These ingredients really pulled through and created that perfect plant based tuna flavor I was hoping for. It even smelled like tuna salad! It does contain quite a few ingredients but when your trying to imitate something such as meat or fish, you’ve got to experiment with what you’ve in the kitchen to get the flavors you want. The good part is the ingredients are pretty basic and easy to find, most of them found in every food pantry. 😉
- 1-15 ounce can organic chickpeas
- 1/2 cup minced celery
- 1/2 cup chopped grape tomatoes
- 1/3 cup chopped black olives
- 1/3 cup chopped cucumber, peeled
- 1/4 cup minced red onion
- 1/4 cup minced cilantro
- 3 tablespoons dill relish
- 2 tablespoons Vegenaise
- 2 tablespoons sprouted pumpkin seeds
- 1 1/2 tbsp mustard
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 lime, juiced
- 3 dashes of dill
- Drain the chickpeas and empty into a large mixing bowl.
- Add in the mustard, Vegenaise, lime juice, and dill.
- Smash the beans with a bean masher until all the chickpeas are broken. You can also just use a food processor and pulse the chickpeas a few times before adding them into your bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix until everything is blended.
- Your done!
You can enjoy this “tuna” mix with a green salad, on whole grain crackers, in a tuna sandwich, or even some “tuna” tacos using organic corn tortillas. If you prefer the mix to be creamier for sandwiches or crackers, simply add a little more Veganaise or avocado to smash in with the chickpeas and finely chop all of the ingredients before mixing them in. As for me, I prefer a chunkier texture but either way I hope you enjoy it as much as we did! 🙂
by Lupita Ronquillo, holistic nutrition writer