The Epicurean VIII

Originally Posted in The Daily Pulse 10.11.04
I don’t think enough people appreciate Tuna. Sadly, thanks to Starkist and Charlie the Tuna, we’re used to Tuna Fish being this awful smelling and horrid tasting crap in a can. But fresh Tuna is one of the tastiest of all fish. Just convince yourself to try it in the fresh version. I know Toro (fatty tuna) is my favorite Sushi, even more than the delicacy that is unagi.

You also know, I’m mainly a French chef, so for this recipe I’d like to go Provincial to the town of St. Remy. This dish can easily be made just by fishing in the local area and picking some of the abundant and wildly growing herbs you need for this dish. Simple and delicious, that is how all the best dishes should be.

Tuna with garlic, tomatoes, and herbs


4 tuna steaks, about 1 inch thick (6-7 ounces each)
3 tbsp Olive Oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 tbsp white wine
3 ripe plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1 tsp dried herbs (Thyme, Rosemary, Oregano, cilantro)
salt and finely ground black pepper
fresh basil leaves, to taste.

1. Season the tuna steaks with salt and pepper. Heat a very heavy frying pan over high heat until very hot. Add the oil and swirl to coat. Add the tuna steaks and press down gently. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for 6-8 minutes, turning only once, until just slightly pink in the center.

I should add right here that Tuna is often served pink in the middle. Think of Tuna like you would beef. If you want to cook it all the way through though (ugh. Why not pour ketchup on it too?), reduce the heat and cook for an extra 5 minutes or so.

2. Transfer the steaks to a serving plate and cover to keep warm. Add the garlic to the pan and fry for 15-20 SECONDS. Stir constantly. Then pour in the wine and boil until it is reduced by half. Add the tomatoes and herbs and cook for 3 minutes until the sauce is bubbling. Season with pepper and then pour the sauce over the steaks. Serve garnished with the fresh basil leaves.