May 2009

Bouchons au Thon

This recipe comes from one of my favorite food writers, Molly Wizenberg, creator of the blog Orangette and author of the book A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes From My Kitchen Table. The name Bouchons au Thon, which literally means “tuna corks,” is a reflection of the dish’s appearance. “Canned tuna isn’t usually something I go crazy for, but these bouchons were special,” writes Wizenberg. “With a texture somewhere between that of a quiche filling and a freshly made country pâté, they tamed the flat pungency of canned fish with the sweetness of tomato and the rich butterfat of crème fraîche.” Bouchons au Thon are delicate, rich, and delicious, like Wizenberg’s writing. Enjoy them with roasted potatoes or a green salad, just as she did while studying abroad in France.

  • 6 ounces canned (water-packed) chunk-light or solid albacore tuna, drained
  • 1 cup lightly packed finely shredded Gruyère
  • 1/3 cup crème fraîche
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease 8 wells of a standard-size muffin tin with nonstick cooking oil spray.

Place the tuna in a medium mixing bowl; use a fork to break up pieces any larger than a dime. Add the cheese, crème fraîche, tomato paste, eggs, onion, parsley, and salt, stirring to thoroughly combine. The mixture will be a soft orange-pink color.

Divide the mixture evenly among the 8 muffin wells. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the tops and edges of the bouchons are set.

Transfer the tin to a rack, and let cool for 5 minutes. Carefully run a small, thin knife around the edge of each bouchon to make sure it isn’t stuck, then carefully remove them from the tin. They will collapse a bit as they cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 8 bouchons, enough for 4 light eaters.

[For Printable Recipe Click Here]

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16 thoughts on “Bouchons au Thon

  1. Gruyere and creme fraiche makes anything delicious. This recipe makes me wonder … should I be embarassed of my love for canned tuna, straight from the can with a squeeze of lemon?

  2. Hello! Can I substitute the Gruyere with another kind of cheese?

    Those look super duper yummy!

  3. Any ideas on how to tweak this to reduce the calories yet maintain flavor? I’m a foodie who appreciates great food but am mindful of my health. Sigh – no longer a 100 pound 20-something.

  4. Liz – Perhaps replace the Gruyère with a suitable low-fat Swiss and the crème fraîche with a low-fat sour cream? Do note that sour cream breaks when heated, which may result in oily bouchons.

    The easiest solution would be to just eat fewer bouchons.

    Also, according to the Washington Post’s caloric break down, there are only 235 calories per two bouchons. So, perhaps substituting isn’t necessary.

  5. Just a note on substitutions – I subbed cheddar cheese for the gruyere, ketchup for the tomato paste, and sour cream for the creme fraiche with no problems. I wanted to make these, so I went with what was available in the fridge/pantry.

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