Warm Tuna Salad

, from Issue #21. September, 2015
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Warm Tuna Salad

Serves: 4


4 x 200 gram tuna steaks

Spice mix
2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 teaspoons ground fennel
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon sea salt

250 grams asparagus, woody ends snapped off
250 grams green beans, stalk end removed
100 grams snow peas
1 firm but ripe avocado
1⁄2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
1 x 300 gram tin cooked white beans, rinsed and drained
2 large roma or beefsteak tomatoes, thickly sliced

Basil dressing
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 cup packed basil leaves
1⁄2 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice


Spice mix: Put the peppercorns, ground fennel and coriander in a mortar and pestle and grind. Add the salt and give a couple more grinds. Set aside.

Salad: Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and blanch the asparagus, beans and snow peas separately. Drop into a bowl of iced water as they are done. Drain well, dry on kitchen towels and place in a large bowl along with the remaining salad ingredients.

Basil dressing: Place all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Season.

Tuna: Brush both sides with olive oil and sprinkle generously with the spice mix. Cover and refrigerate if not cooking immediately.

Preheat a ridged grill or sauté pan and brush lightly with oil. Cook the tuna on both sides until done to your liking. Rest for 5 minutes then cut or break into large chunks.

To serve: Add the tuna to the vegetables and toss with most of the dressing. Divide between shallow serving plates and spoon over the remaining dressing. Serve with lemon wedges and warm bread rolls.