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Tuna Steak au Poivre with White Beans and Bitter Greens Salad


Tuna Steaks:

  • 4 tuna steaks (6 ounces each, 1 1/2 inches thick)

  • Coarse salt

  • Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling

  • Coarse black pepper

  • Lemon wedges, for passing

White Beans:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 1 small onion, chopped

  • 2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

  • 1 store-bought or homemade roasted red pepper (recipe follows), diced

  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves stripped and finely chopped

  • A handful of flat leaf parsley, chopped

  • Coarse salt and pepper

Bitter Greens:

  • 1 head escarole, cleaned and shredded

  • 1 medium head radicchio, shredded

  • 1 lemon, juiced

  • Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), to coat

  • Coarse salt


If using a store-bought roasted red pepper, skip to the next paragraph. To roast a red pepper: pre-heat broiler to high. Split and seed pepper and place skin side up close to hot broiler. Blacken skin of pepper. Transfer pepper to brown paper bag and seal. Let pepper cool to handle. Peel charred skin away from pepper flesh and dice.

Pre-heat a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Pat tuna steaks dry and season with a little coarse salt. Drizzle EVOO over tuna and lightly coat steaks on both sides. Coat one side of the steaks with a generous amount of coarse ground black pepper. When the pan is very hot, add steaks, peppered side down. Sear and brown steaks 2 minutes, then turn, and immediately reduce heat to medium. Loosely cover pan with aluminum foil tent and allow steaks to cook 5 minutes for rare, or 7 minutes for medium. Steaks should be firm, but have a little give and some pink should remain at the center.

In a second skillet over moderate heat, coat pan with EVOO, add garlic and onion and sauté for 3 minutes to soften onion bits. Add beans and diced roasted red pepper to the pan. Heat beans through, 2-3 minutes. Stir in rosemary and parsley and season beans with salt and pepper.

Combine escarole and radicchio in shallow dish. Coat greens with lemon juice, then a drizzle of EVOO. Season salad with coarse salt and toss well.

To serve, pile a serving of beans on a dinner plate and top with tuna steak. Serve salad greens along side beans and fish. You can also serve with sliced bread that has been toasted and then rubbed with half a garlic clove.