Life Eat & Drink Dish of the day: Spice-crusted tuna

Dish of the day: Spice-crusted tuna

Hardie Grant
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Many people have a bee in their bonnet about serving tuna, says Ben. The catch-cry ‘sustainable fish’ always come up. Well, just make sure your tuna is local line-caught fish!


1 garlic clove, peeled
2 tablespoons tahini
80ml extra virgin olive oil
2 lemons, juiced
freshly ground black pepper
4 150 g tuna loin steaks
grilled vegetable salad, to serve
or Grilled verdure miste, to serve

Spice crust

4 tablespoons coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon ras el hanout
freshly ground black pepper


1. Prepare your barbecue for direct grilling over a high heat.
2. To make the spice crust, roughly pound the coriander, cumin and sesame seeds in a mortar with the ras el hanout. Spread the spices on a chopping board or tray and season with salt and pepper.
3. In the same mortar, smash the garlic clove with a little salt, then add the tahini. Mix with the pestle, then add a little water to thin the mixture to the consistency of thick pouring cream. Add the olive oil and the juice of one lemon and season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Rub the tuna steaks with the remaining lemon juice. Push the tuna into the spice mixture so the steaks are well coated on both sides.
5. Place the tuna steaks directly on the barbecue and cook on both sides until the tuna is medium-rare. The cooking time will depend on the thickness of the tuna – the best way is to watch the colour change from red to white on the edge of the fish while cooking. When the colour change reaches the middle of the fish edge, turn and repeat the process.
6. Remove the tuna from the grill. Break it up roughly and arrange on a platter with the salad. Drizzle with the tahini dressing and serve straight away.

Recipe courtesy of

Recipe from Ben O’Donoghue’s BBQ Bible ($39.95) courtesy of Hardie Grant. 


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