Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Tuna Tartare

I'd like to start off by wishing everyone a very happy 2013. I'd also like to apologise for my unintended prolonged absence from Leeks and Limoni. It was due to a variety of factors that just happened to come one after another, starting with a virulent computer virus, followed by building work which I naively thought would be confined to two rooms but actually took over the whole house. Just as the work was finally ending, I caught one of the nasty bugs doing the rounds which took me nicely up to Christmas. However, a wonderful two weeks in Italy effectively got everything back on an even keel.

Now, I know that traditionally everyone feels that they have to go on a diet in January or at least cut back on various much loved dishes and drinks. Yet personally I think that this is the wrong way to go. January is generally a fairly gloomy month, with grey skies, dark mornings and no holidays on the horizon so to eliminate still further the little pleasures of life seems rather counterproductive if you ask me. I prefer to ease myself into a new year with a few treats rather than make myself virtuously miserable with puritanical abstinence.

Whichever camp you are in however, this tuna tartare fits the bill nicely. The flavours are lively and zingy, the fresh tuna gives it a suitably luxurious feel and it is light but satisfying - you feel as though are eating something special rather than doing penance.

I'm sending this over to Javelin Warrior's weekly challenge, Made with Love Mondays which encourages us all to cook from scratch and provides great recipes to try every week.

RECIPE - serves two

Quantities are approximate as much depends on the size of the tuna steaks and personal taste

2 very fresh tuna steaks, about 100g each
1 spring onion, chopped finely
1 teaspoon capers
juice and zest of half a lemon
half a red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)
1 scant tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

Using a very sharp knife, cut the tuna into small (but not too small, you want a bit of texture) dice.

Mix all the other ingredients together in a bowl.

Add the tuna to the other ingredients, mixing it all together very gently. Season with salt and pepper.

Spoon the mixture into two rings or other moulds, pressing down gently but firmly.

Leave in the fridge for about half an hour before serving.


  1. I haven't had tuna tartare is a long time and this sounds wonderful - love the addition of red chiles and capers. Sorry to hear about your illness but glad to hear things are back to normal... Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Thanks! I think the capers are really important as they give acidity which balances the rich tuna.

  2. I recently ordered tuna tartare on holiday and was upset to be presented with just tuna fillet cooked rare, that is NOT tuna tartare!!

    This recipe is perfect, a delicious classic tuna tartare recipe that I will be following soon for my tartare fix!

    Happy new year!

    1. How disappointing! I hate it when food I've ordered is not as it should be! Glad you like the recipe.

  3. Love Tuna Tartare but I'm not quite brave enough to make it at home as I often worry about how fresh the fish is. I'm glad to see that your version looks very appetising!

    1. I take your point although I suppose we don't really know how fresh the fish is even when we order it in a restaurant! At least when I make it at home I know that it hasn't been sitting around for ages and that it's been prepared in the right way.