How to make Kerala style sandwich Tuna

Poor planning often leads to unhealthy meal choices. To beat that I recently figured adding a big spoonful of Sambal to an oil drained can of tuna makes a tasty bread spread.

But better still, it got me into thinking that a Kerala fish curry version of the canned tuna would make for a fantastic fusion recipe to go into salads and wraps. With that in mind I prepared a spicy and flavour packed Kerala style sandwich Tuna.

Kerala, my home state in India is exceptionally well known for seafood and of which the Kerala fish curry is a delicacy which is loved by people all over the world.

The beauty lies in the fact that  there is not one but many different styles of preparation which makes it appealing to everyone, from foodies who love a sting to their tongue, to the ones who need a bland yet delicious tummy comforter.

This recipe is a modern take on a spicy classic that uses all traditional masalas, curry leaves and pot tamarind to impart the sourness that is characteristic of Kerala fish curries.

Typically, the fish curries (thin gravy with a lot of broth) is had with steamed rice. This one however is a thickened gravy version to suit sandwiches, burger buns or to go as an accompaniment to rice, much like a pickle/cooked curry paste.

Here’s how you would make yours,

Kerala style sandwich Tuna

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: ~450g


  • 400g can of Tuna in oil (oil half drained out)
  • Indian spices - 1 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp chilli powder, 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • 4-5 curry leaves
  • 1 tsp canola/veg oil
  • 1 small onion - chopped finely
  • 1 clove of garlic - chopped finely
  • A dash of grated ginger
  • 50g - canned diced tomatoes
  • 2 small pieces of pot tamarind (kudam puli) rinsed in 50 ml water- available at Indian (if you're overseas) / Kerala (anywhere else in India) stores


  1. Heat oil in a thick bottom pan and the oil.
  2. Add the mustard seeds and when they start to crackle, add ginger, garlic & curry leaves.
  3. When the oil is fragrant with the smell of fried garlic and ginger, add the Indian spices.
  4. As the spices start to sizzle in the oil, add the rest of the remaining oil from the tuna can.
  5. To this add onions and let it sizzle till the oil starts to separate.
  6. Add in the flaked tuna, tomatoes and pot tamarind.
  7. Mix well until combined and cook for another 5 mins on low flame.
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That’s it, make yours & please share the good word!

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