…the tuna’s really good – tuna tartare w pickled cucumber

This tuna tartare is a quick meal to make for lunch or dinner – perfect for hot, summer days. It is light and fresh and the flavours work really well together. The idea is from a recipe in an old copy of Delicious mag.

I went with a movie quote for the name – after over 100 posts I do need to branch out of the music world and into my other hobbies for titles! If you can’t pick it, it’s a line from Notting Hill – because this tuna is really good!

tuna tartare with pickled cucumber

serves 2 as a main (will serve 4 as an entrée)

250g sashimi grade tuna
¼ cup of rice wine vinegar
1 tbs pickled ginger
2 tsp caster sugar
1 tsp wasabi paste
1 lebanese cucumber (or about ½ a continental)
4 small red radishes
1 tsp salt

for serving

6-8 wonton wrappers (2 each for serving and some extra in case some are over cooked)
Rice oil (or sunflower or vegetable oil) for deep frying
2 tbs black sesame seeds
2 tbs white sesame seeds
Kewpie mayo
Thai basil
Extra virgin olive oil


Cut the tuna into 1 cm cubes. Place in a bowl, cover and place in the fridge.

Julienne the pickled ginger.
De-seed the cucumber and cut into 1 cm lengths and then 5mm widths.
Cut the radish into the same size cubes as the cucumber (5 mm thick, 1 cm lengths).

Combine cucumber, vinegar, ginger, sugar, wasabi and salt. Toss to combine.
Cover and chill for 30 minutes.

Combine 1 tbs of black sesame seeds and 1 tbs of white sesames seeds on a plate.
Organise your wonton wrappers onto a tray and have some paper towels handy.
Lightly brush one side of each wonton wrapper with water. Press into seeds to coat.
Half fill a wok or large pan with oil and heat to 180 degrees celcius. Bubbles will surround a wooden spoon when placed in the oil.
When the oil is at temperature, carefully lower one wonton wrapper seed side down into the oil. Cook for 15 seconds. The wrapper should be crisp and golden in colour when ready.
Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel and set aside. Repeat with remaining wonton wrappers.

Toast remaining sesame seeds in a dry fry pan over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Cool.

Drain excess liquid from the cucumbers into a bowl. Measure out 60 ml (¼ cup) of the liquid and set aside. Discard the rest.

Toss cucumber with radish, tuna and reserved liquid.

Working quickly, but carefully, place 8-10 cm ring moulds onto your serving plates and fill with ¼ of the tuna mix, gently press down. Remove mould and repeat. It also works if you gently press the tuna into ramekins (fill to the top) and then turn out onto the plate if you don’t have ring moulds like me.

Top each tuna mound with 2 wonton wrappers (slightly off to the side) Drizzle some olive oil over the top. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and top with Thai basil leaves. Kewpie mayo is also nice as a side.



2 Comments Add yours

  1. Louise says:

    Surreal but nice!

    Liked by 1 person

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