Tuna Pimiento Patties with Pimiento Tartar Sauce, what makes you cry?

What makes you cry?

It’s the holiday season…. I’m talking happy tears.

Mon mari almost had teary-eyes when I told him I was making Tuna Cakes for dinner.

They were not tears of joy.

Then I explained that I was adding pimientos and capers and hot mustard and spices and he perked right up.

Presentation is everything…. But I rather enjoy that fleeting moment of him putting on a brave face for another ‘fish’.

Tuna Pimiento Patties with Pimiento Tartar Sauce

Total time: 25 minutes


  • 9oz (270gr) canned (tinned) tuna
  • 4 tbs chopped pimientos
  • 2 tbs chopped dry-cured Greek olives
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp hot, Dijon-style mustard
  • 2 tbs bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • Pimiento Tartar Sauce:
  • 3 tbs chopped pimientos
  • 2 tbs chopped capers
  • 2 tbs chopped dry-cured Greek olives
  • 2 tsp Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbs mayonnaise
  • 3 tbs Greek yogurt

Tuna Pimiento Patties


  • Drain the tuna and put into a large bowl. 
  • Add pimientos, olives, herbs, spices and mix well
  • Whisk egg in a small bowl. 
  • Add mustard and breadcrumbs, mix well. 
  • Add egg mixture to tuna mixture and gently mix.  
  • Divide and form into 4 patties. 
  • Heat oil in medium nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add patties and fry, 7 – 9 minutes, until starting to brown. 
  • Carefully turn with a spatula and sauté another 5 – 6 minutes.  Remove and place on plate. 
  • Tarter Sauce:
  • Mix all ingredients for Tarter Sauce.

Print Recipe

Back to the tears….

I’m not talking about the tears we shed when we hear a sad story, or see a needy child or an abandoned pet or watch the horrific pictures of a yet another natural disaster…..

I’m talking about the tears we shed when we are overwhelmed by beauty.

I’m talking about the tears that run down our cheeks as we stand in awe, smiling, heart overflowing with joy.

We, as with the rest of the world, have an abundance of ‘holiday specials’ on TV this time of year: some good, some mediocre, some truly abysmal.

And, also like the rest of the world, we ‘know’ how the traditional songs should be sung and music should be played.

I had always thought that ‘Ave Maria’ should by sung by a soprano with a crystal-clear voice.

That is, I thought that until I heard a rather young Pavarotti sing it.

I was transfixed….

It was perfect.

If I sit quietly I can still hear it.

It brought tears to my eyes.

The next morning while I was taking the girls on their sunrise walk, I started thinking about what other things ‘bring tears to my eyes’.

I will be awestruck by a beautiful sunrise or sunset, and drop everything to stand, quietly, and enjoy every second.

I will be overwhelmed at the view from a mountain- or hill-top.

I will get chills down my spine by the beauty of a painting or sculpture.

But it’s music that has the ability to make me cry.

A Great Highland Bagpipe playing ‘Amazing Grace’.

Jeff Buckley singing ‘Hallelujah’

A full orchestra and chorus performing ‘Ode to Joy’.

Bryn singing ‘Shenandoah’

What brings tears to your eyes?

If you want nutrition information for the recipe, try this site: Calorie Count

6 thoughts on “Tuna Pimiento Patties with Pimiento Tartar Sauce, what makes you cry?”

  1. My daughter will be getting married in 6 weeks, I don’t know how I will hold it together. A laugh and putting fish cakes in front of me would distract me.

  2. Hearing that My Beloved’s daughter is going to have a baby did it to me recently. Like you, it’s usually music. Kiri te Kanawa singing arias. Danny Boy. Certain Christmas carols; The Little Drummer Boy gets me every time.

  3. It’s music for me too. The orchestral ending of “Nessun Dorma” in Puccini’s Turandot, the chord change to major in Dvorak’s New World Symphony, and hearing a large crowd singing any national anthem get me every time. And just thinking about hearing Schumann’s ‘Im wunderschönen Monat Mai’ from Dichterliebe (especially if it’s sung by a tenor) and/or Vaughan William’s “On Wenlock Edge” (particularly ‘Is my team ploughing?’) immediately brings tears to my eyes.

    But I know that after tasting these fish cakes with pimiento tartar sauce, I would be swooning and saying, “je vais pleurer”.

  4. Tanna, rainbows always make me smile

    Kate, and it seems like most kindnesses are unexpected….

    Good luck, Val – but you should be crying at the wedding LOL

    Pam most everything by Kiri….

    Elizabeth, yes to all those… And there is an aria in Tosca…..

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