Breton Tuna and White Bean Gratin

Breton Tuna and White Bean Gratin

Like a tuna casserole given a makeover, this pantry dinner is modern, sleek and a whole lot more elegant than anything your grandmother used to serve. The key is using really good-quality tuna, preferably the kind packed in extra-virgin olive oil and imported from Italy or Spain. If you can find a large 7-ounce can, use that. But the more typical size (5 3/4 ounces) will work perfectly well if you can’t. Serve this over toasted slices of crusty bread that you’ve drizzled with oil. A crisp green salad or platter of sliced, salted cucumber is all you need to make a satisfying meal.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Step 2

    Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook for until fragrant and soft, another 2 to 4 minutes. Drain one can of beans and add to the skillet, then add the other can with its liquid. Season generously with salt and pepper to taste, then reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
  3. Step 3

    Transfer bean mixture to a food processor and blend to a purée. Add cream and milk, and pulse to combine. Scrape mixture into a large bowl and stir in tuna, chile and half the cheese. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  4. Step 4

    Scrape mixture into a 1 1/2-quart shallow gratin dish (no need to grease it). Sprinkle with bread crumbs and remaining cheese, and dot with butter. Bake until top begins to turn golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes, then scatter parsley over top and bake for another 5 minutes, until top is golden and bubbling.