Midday Mashup
Lemony Asparagus Cannelini & Tuna

So what's for lunch today?

What you ate last night?  Chips and a beefstick from the vending machine? The best looking brown bag in the office fridge (even if it belonged to another)?? The drive thru?

I'm not judging. I've had all of the above for lunch (but never another's!).

But I've turned over a new (lettuce) leaf.

You see, I'm not a morning person. Given my druthers, I'd sleep through most of them. There are those that will argue that I seem to, even if my eyes are open. (To whom it may concern: I KNOW YOU SAY THAT!).

Well, anyway, what I was getting at before I was transported by the shame of being a nightowl, was this:  Give me a reason to make it through the morning.  Give me a cup of coffee, or ten two, give me a nice walk/trot/whatevs with my best guy, Jack. Give me a DECENT LUNCH.

It needn't be fancy. It needn't be pricey. It just needs to be somewhat original.

Much like this brown bag hack I make in variations, all the time. Not exactly leftovers, I call these combinations of ingredients from earlier meals my Midday Mash-Ups.

Today, I'm using the asparagus from this salad, the dressing from this meal, and a can, each, of albacore tuna and cannelini.  I tossed in a few extras, too. It's kind of a formula I seem to emulate-- a bowl of

  • some type of cooked beans (like these cannelini, or garbanzo, sliced green beans, lentils, kidneys-- whatever you have on hand), mixed with 
  • a little good-quality tuna, salmon, seasoned firm tofu, a few small cubes of prosciutto, etc...
  • seasonal vegetables that I've used in the week's meals (I just keep prepping a little extra, and stash a bit back)
  • a favorite vinaigrette or dressing
  • `and nuts, cheeses, herbs or spices that give the whole thing a little pizazz.

I prepped the raw asparagus (Try it raw! I love it raw!), drained the quite fancy sustainably-harvested natural store tuna, which is more costly, but I think worth it...

Side Note: I like to splurge a little on canned tuna. I pay attention to packaging, harvest practices, quality of meat, and taste. This girl has gotten awfully picky since the days of her favorite pedestrian lunch of cheapest-on-the-shelf-and-with-a-coupon-for-fifty-cents-off tuna, saltines, and Tabasco sauce.

...and drained a can of cannelini beans, rinsed them, let them drain again.  In my favorite salad bowl, (or a to-go container with a lid for transport, depending upon my destination that day), I added one half cup of the drained beans to a handful of the prepped asparagus. I grated a small garlic clove, (I often work alone : }. Proceed as appropriate for your workplace with that garlic.), zested a lemon, liberally ground black pepper over the top, sprinkled a bit of fresh cheese and a few reserved leaves of fresh rosemary.  Adjust, delete, or add to the list of ingredients as you prefer.

I dressed the salad in a Lemon Rosemary Gorgonzola Vinaigrette.  And tossed in a handful of mixed greens. Note: Pack the lettuce separately, to avoid wilting, and add just before eating.

This is a high protein, high fiber powerhouse of a meal, and has the oomph to carry you through a very busy afternoon, (in which I might be found furiously making up for being soooo slow to get go, earlier-- did I mention I wasn't a morning person?).

Jack likes it ,too.

So, what is your favorite Midday Mashup?

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