Friday, November 21, 2008

Grilled Tuna With White Bean Puree, Olive Tapenade, and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes for Tyler Florence Fridays

It's Tyler Florence Friday or TFF time again and our second week of making and posting the recipes of the wonderful Tyler Florence. I stuck with the same cookbook this week: Stirring the Pot because I saw this recipe for tuna (pg 162-163) and really wanted to try it. Although it is a recipe with several components they all looked pretty easy and I thought it would be a great meal to share with a friend.

Grilled Tuna with White Bean Puree, Olive Tapenade, and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
Stirring The Pot, Tyler Florence

Tyler says: "I love this Mediterranean take on grilled tuna steak. The gorgeous grill marks contrast with the moist, rare flesh of the fish. The creamy white bean puree and the tapenade offer two totally different dimensions to the dish--which I find myself going back and forth between them."

1 pint on-the-vine cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup Orange-Chili oil (see recipe below)
Olive Tapenade
1 cup pitted kalamata olives
1 small garlic clove, peeled
pinch crushed red pepper flakes
4 sprigs fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley
1 Tbsp fresh tarragon
1 Tbsp red or white vinegar
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
White Bean Pure
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves peeled and roughly chopped
2 anchovy fillets
2 14-ounce cans white cannellini beans, drained
1/2 cup chicken broth heated
2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 sushi-quality tuna steaks (such as Ahi), about 1 inch thick (6-8 ounces each)
extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Israeli arugula (or regular arugula)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lay tomatoes in a single layer on a roasting tray. Drizzle with Orange-Chili Oil. Roast tomatoes for 8-10 minutes, until tomatoes burst and give off their juices.

To prepare the tapenade, combine olives, garlic, red pepper flakes, parsley, tarragon, vinegar and oil in a food processor. Pulse until a coarse puree forms. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper; set aside.

For the White Bean Puree, place a saucepan over medium heat and add a 2-count of oil (about 2 Tbsp). Add the garlic and anchovies and cook until the garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant. Add the drained beans and warm broth; cook until heated through. Transfer the mixture to a clean food processor; add vinegar and puree. (Thin with extra broth if the puree is too thick). Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside and keep warm until ready to serve.

Heat the grill to high. Drizzle the tuna with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place tuna on the hot grill; cook about 45 seconds. turn tuna and cook for another 45 seconds. (The tuna should be rare on the inside and have nice grill marks on the outside). serve tuna with Olive Tapenade, White Bean Puree, arugula, and roasted on-the-vine tomatoes.

Orange-Chili Oil: In a bowl combine 4 springs fresh thyme, 2 fresh rosemary sprigs, 1 1/2 Tbsp crushed red pepper flakes, 2 strips orange peel, and 1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil. Set aside for at least 1 hour to let the flavors infuse. Cover and store remaining oil in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 months.

Notes/Results: I invited my friend Natalie over for dinner and served this. It is delicious, the flavors and textures truly compliment each other. The tuna is moist and great with the peppery arugula, the bean puree has a lot of flavor from the anchovy and garlic, the tapenade is tangy and bright, and the tomatoes are juicy and delicious with the orange-chili oil. Nat made the same comment Tyler did about liking going back and forth between the tapenade and the bean puree.

Don't let the long list of ingredients and steps in the recipe bother you as it all comes together quickly and easily. I made the chili oil and tapenade earlier in the day and the beans, tomatoes and tuna before serving. This is a great meal for entertaining as it tastes great and looks incredible on the plate. I would make this again as well as make some of the recipe's components to serve on their own. So far Stirring The Pot is 2 for 2 in my book.

You can check what the other TFF members made and posted at the round up on the TFF site (here), and if you are a Tyler fan (or fanatic) consider joining us next Friday!


  1. sounds like a great recipe for parties :)

  2. I love the fact that you can prepare this dish in stages. Looks like much of it can be made ahead - which is perfect for entertaining.
    The whole meal looks so delicious, why am I not your neighbour?

  3. Glad that you've enjoyed both recipes from Tyler's new book! The bean puree and tapenade and tomatoes sound like they'd be great with just about anything :)

  4. Wow - I love every single aspect of that dish. It really looks great together and I could use a plate of it right now.......

  5. Just fabulous in every respect. I bet the tapenade and bean puree would make great appetizers, too!

  6. What a fancy meal to share! Love it. You've been cooking up a delicious storm lately.

  7. For New Years Eve about 10 years ago I made something similar to this - tuna kebabs on rosemary sprigs with the white bean puree. So I know exactly how good those flavours must have been with the added goodness of the tapenade. And your pictures are lovely!

  8. Looks great - I will have to look out for Tyler Florence. I had never heard of him until you started your TFFs. I have another gazpacho for you this week as well for your SSs.

  9. Sounds wonderful - I love cherry tomatoes roasted on the vine like this too! I'm so joining in this - not the friday after Thxgiving, but the one after. Can't wait!

  10. Kat--it is good and easy so good for small dinners.

    Natashya--the stages make it very easy and it was good.

    Andrea--I think all the components were really good on their own.

    Megan--thanks! it was a great Tyler recipe!

    Cathy--I have been munching on the leftover puree and tapenade and they would be great pupus.

    Laurie--don't my hips know it!

    Foodycat--thanks! It is a great flavor combo. I bet your tuna kebabs were yummy!

    Suzie--he is pretty well known here--a couple of Food Network shows and such. Glad to have you at Souper Sunday!

    Michelle--yay! we are happy to have you whenever you join!


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