Peppered tuna with niçoise salad

Jun Tanaka prepares a delicious black olive dressing to echo the olives in this twist to a classic tuna niçoise salad
By Jun Tanaka
Peppered tuna with niçoise salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes plus 30 minutes cooling
  • Effort: easy


For the vinaigrette

  • 100 ml white wine vinegar
  • 50 ml water
  • 1 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed
  • 1 sprigs fresh tarragon
  • 1 tbsp smooth, Dijon mustard
  • 350 ml extra virgin olive oil

For the black olive dressing

  • 100 g black, pitted olive
  • 2 tsp capers, drained
  • 1 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed
  • 100 ml olive oil

For the niçoise salad

  • 8 cherry tomotoes, vines attached
  • 300 ml oilive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 100 g green beans, topped but leaving the tail
  • 4 new potatoes, cooked, halved
  • 4 quail's eggs, hard-boiled, peeled, halved
  • 8 anchovy fillets
  • handfuls mixed salad leaves

For the peppered tuna

  • 200 g fresh tuna
  • 50 g cracked black pepper


1. For the vinaigrette: place the vinegar, water, garlic and tarragon into a small non-reactive pan and being to the boil. Remove from the heat immediately, then leave to infuse for 30 minutes.

2. Strain into a bowl, discarding the solids, then whisk in the mustard until well combined. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, whisking continuously, until well combined. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

3. For the black olive dressing: place all of the black olive dressng ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Pour into a squeeze bottle and set aside.

4. For the niçoise salad: place the tomatoes into a heavy-based pan and cover with the oil. Add the garlic and rosemary, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and slowly bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are very tender, then leave to cool in the oil.

5. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and cook the green beans for 5-6 minutes, or until tender. Drain and refresh in cold water, then drain again. Add the green beans to the potatoes and toss with two tablespoons of the vinaigrette.

6. For the peppered tuna: season the tuna with salt, roll in the cracked black pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Place on a hot griddle for 30 seconds, then flip over and cook for another 30 seconds, or until golden-brown all over but pink in the middle. Leave to rest for a few minutes, then thickly slice into eight pieces.

7. To serve, draw a circle around each of four serving plates with the black olive dressing and lay the green beans across the middle of the plate. Place two slices of tuna on either side of the green beans on each plate. Place half a new potato each next to each slice of tuna, then place an anchovy fillet on top of each potato. Arrange half a quails egg next to the potato, followed by one cherry tomato. Dress the salad leaves with the remaining vinaigrette and arrange in the centre of the plate.

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