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Fish and Shellfish, Mains, Quick and Easy

Fried tuna with tomatoes and onions

Fried tuna with tomatoes and onions
Manos Chatzikonstantis /

In the 15th century, Vasco da Gama and other Portuguese seamen left their Atlantic-facing nation to cash in on the spice trade. They established colonies in South America, India, Africa and beyond, and as they gathered up the riches of ... Read more

Total time: 30 minutes | Serves 4
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (more as needed), divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and slightly crushed
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • Salt, pepper
  • 4 onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 (1-pound each) tuna steaks, about 1 1/2 inches thick, halved crosswise
  • 1 1/2 cups dry breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Step 1In a saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and season with one-half teaspoon salt and one-eighth-teaspoon pepper. Simmer 5 to 10 minutes until the tomatoes are tender and release their juices. If necessary, add a few tablespoons of water to thin out the sauce slightly. Remove the garlic, adjust seasoning as needed and set aside, covered, in a warm place.

Step 2In a large frying pan, heat the remaining oil over medium heat and saute the onions. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and one-fourth teaspoon pepper and cook until soft and golden, turning with a wooden spoon occasionally to prevent burning. Add the vinegar and simmer until it is just absorbed. Tilt the pan, keeping the onion-flavored oil to one side (you'll use this to cook the tuna). Lift out the onions with a slotted spoon, set aside and keep warm.

Step 3Rinse the tuna and pat dry with paper towels. Season each piece with one-half teaspoon salt. Place the breadcrumbs on a plate, and coat the tuna on all sides. Add a little more oil, if needed, to the pan and place over medium heat. When hot, add the tuna and fry until a deep golden brown crust has formed underneath, about 1 1/2 minutes. Flip the tuna and cook the other side.

Step 4Divide the onions evenly among four plates; place tuna on top of each. Top with the tomato sauce. Scatter with parsley; serve with crispy fried or boiled potatoes.

Note: Adapted from "Piri Piri Starfish.".


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