Seared Tuna Loin with Sichuan Pickled Cucumbers and Roasted Vine Tomatoes

This is a hearty starter for two people, but if you want it to be a 'main meal', 'Summer lunch' or 'light dinner' add some rice, steamed veg or noodles and christen it whatever you like.

Use the best tuna you can find - and contrary to popular belief, most frozen tuna is every bit as safe as fresh provided it's thawed sensibly (in the fridge)

The reason is that frozen Tuna is usually processed, packed and frozen within a couple of hours of being caught, so can actually be fresher than the supermarket's 'fresh' tuna. 


  • 250g Tuna Loin, in one or two pieces, fresh or previously frozen and thawed, whatever tickles your pickle. 
  • 1 tsp wasabi (easily found in tubes in most supermarkets)
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp light soy


Preheat a heavy based grill pan or frying pan until a drop of sesame oil sizzles

Mix wasabi, soy and oil and brush over tuna loin fillets

Sear for 2 minutes each side in the hot pan, add an extra minute if you like it medium. 

Slice across the grain into 1/2 cm thick slices

Arrange on a plate with pickled cucumber and roasted vine tomatoes. Enjoy

Roasted vine tomatoes

  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • splash light soy
  • 6 x 2-3cm diameter vine tomatoes (on vine if possible)




Preheat oven to 160c

Place tomatoes, vine still attached if possible in a small ovenproof dish

Drizzle with sesame oil and soy sauce, 

Roast for 25 mins

Allow to cool slightly

Sichuan Pickled Cucumbers

  • 1 cucumber
  • 1⁄2 tsp crushed Sichuan pepper 
  • 1 small red chilli sliced (omit for a milder pickle)  
  • 1⁄2 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1⁄4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt 


Halve cucumber lengthwise 

Thinly slice on the diagonal and place in a  glass or ceramic bowl

In a small pan heat vinegar, sugar, salt & crushed peppers (and sliced Chilli if using) until salt and sugar are dissolved.

Pour over the sliced cucumbers and leave for 30 mins. 

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