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Sunday Tuna

  • Yield: 2 servings


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 Italian plum tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup pitted and halved black olives (such as Kalamata)
  • 2 teaspoons finely-minced anchovy fillets or anchovy paste
  • 1 tablespoons chopped basil plus 2 tablespoons in chiffonade (thin strips)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chopped oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut in 8 pieces, chilled
  • 2 top-quality 8-ounce tuna steaks (1 to 1 1/4 inches thick)
  • 1 tablespoon Creole seasoning


  • In a saucepan heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over high heat. Add onions and saute 1 minute. Stir in garlic, tomatoes, olives, anchovies, chopped basil, parsley and oregano; season with salt and 10 turns of pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add butter pieces, stirring. When butter is half melted, remove saucepan from heat and continue stirring until thoroughly incorporated.
  • In a saute pan heat oil over high heat. Season tuna steaks with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning and sear until well-browned, about 2 minutes per side, turning once. Pour tomato sauce mixture over tuna steaks and bring to a gentle simmer. Continue cooking until tuna is medium-rare, about 5 minutes more. To serve, transfer tuna to 2 heated plates, spoon some sauce over and around steaks and garnish with basil chiffonade.