Grilled Tuna with Warm Balsamic Vinaigrette

Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Lighter, Quicker, Better: Cooking for the Way We Eat Today

Lighter, Quicker, Better

By Richard Sax and Marie Simmons

Published 2000

  • About

The full richness of tuna stands up to the flavor of balsamic vinegar in this recipe from chef Esther Carpenter, who devised this dish when she was at the Four Seasons Hotel in Newport Beach, California. She suggests serving the tuna with a mixture of baby vegetables (zucchini, summer squash, carrots, and egg-plant) grilled with olive oil, shallots, and fresh thyme.


  • 4 tuna steaks, about Ā½ inch thick (6 or 7 ounces each)
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, bruised
  • Freshly ground black pepper


    1. Arrange the tuna steaks in a single layer in a shallow non-aluminum dish. Add the vinegar, thyme, and garlic. Add a sprinkling of black pepper and turn the fish over to coat. Cover and marinate at least 1 hour or overnight.
    2. Boil the broth in a small heavy saucepan until reduced to Ā¾ cup. Add vinegar, shallots, garlic, and chopped thyme and return to a boil. Stir in the tomato and optional enoki mushrooms and season with black pepper. Set aside.
    3. Heat a grill or broiler. Arrange rack about 4 inches from the heat source.
    4. Coat both sides of the tuna with a thin layer of cracked peppercorns. Grill the tuna until the outside is seared, but inside is still pink, 5 minutes for the first side, 4 minutes for the second.
    5. Reheat vinaigrette if necessary. Add parsley. Transfer tuna to plates and spoon vinaigrette over. Garnish with thyme.