Tuna Tartar at Home

This is a copy-cat recipe from one of my favourite restaurants.

Barrafina in Soho is a little Spanish place. There are no tables or reservations, just two bars. One for waiting, one for eating.

There are very few things in this world that I will queue for, but this is one of them… and it’s actually part of the fun!

You grab a bottle of wine, some nibbles and slowly chat and chew your way along, until there’s space enough at the big bar for you to sit down.

This is where the real magic happens. The charming, funny staff will zip over and rattle through the specials board with you (highlighting their personal favourites). They’ll top you up with wine ‘n’ water and bring you plate after plate of the best tapas you’ve ever tasted.

Not all of it is strictly Spanish, some of it has influences from other places too.

Like their tuna tartar.

A carefully formed pile of fresh, Asian flavoured tuna and a dollop of zingy, smooth guacamole. It’s everyone’s favourite and they frequently run out.

It’s my gent’s favourite dish, so I made it for him at home.

Very few people make tuna tartar at home, intimidated by the idea of it… but it’s so bloody easy! Trust me, as soon as you’ve made it once you’ll be whipping it up for nibbles every time you have company.

The real key is super fresh tuna.

Don’t buy tuna steaks from the fish section of the supermarket. They’re fine for cooking, but not great raw.

You need sashimi quality fish, which means asking a pro. Go to your local fishmonger, or the fish counter if you have a really good supermarket and tell him/her (actually, I’ve never met a lady fishmonger but I’m certain they’re out there!) and tell them you plan on making tartar.

You’ll need a hunk of tuna; about 4in wide. 2 ripe avocados, coriander (cilantro), lemon, lime, garlic, salt, soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seeds (optional).

Lay your tuna out on a cool chopping board.

Cut away any straggly, stringy bits.

Slice into skinny steaks. About 1cm width.

Slice these up into 1cm strips.

Then slice the other way to get 1cm cubes.

Keep going until you have a good pile of tuna blocks.

Pop them into a bowl with 4tbsp soy sauce.

Add the same amount of sesame oil.

Add a couple of tablespoons of sesame seeds if you like (they do this in the restaurant but I’d run out this time and it still tasted great).

Toss it all together.

Now puree your avocados with 1 small clove of crushed garlic, a big pinch of salt, the juice of 1 small lemon & lime and a handful of torn coriander.

Pile them up next to each other & pop a sprig of coriander on top if you’re feeling fancy!

Easy peasy and whipped up in a flash!

You can serve with forks (as they do at Barrafina) and just scoop it all up as it is, or lean towards the Mexican side of the dish and serve with topitos (salted tortilla chips).

Either way, you’ll want a chilled glass of something delicious and someone to impress.

I wont tell them how easy it was if you won’t!

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  • That looks like good clean eating! Thanks for the recipe Rosie.

    Fie x Coffee & Confetti

  • Charlotte MacDonald-Gaunt

    Looks amazing – I love fresh tuna, so will definitely try this at the weekend :o) Xx

    Makeup by Candlelight

  • Oh man this looks good. One of my friends’ dad went out on a fishing boat and bought back a big load of tuna once. That night we had the best tartar I’ve ever tasted in my life. Super fresh fish is definitely the way forward! xx

    PS the guacamole? Genius touch. I wouldn’t have ever put the two together!

    Little Miss Katy | Lifesyle, Fashion & Beauty

  • The slow pace

    When I think about home made tuna tartar I think about food poisoning immediately! But this could be a game changer! I always think I’m going to reproduce your recipes over the weekend but then I never do it. This time I will. I swear. Tuna tartar is one of my favourite things in the world!

  • I really like this post πŸ™‚

    I am a lifestyle blogger writing about NYC, my other trips and lifestyle inspiration. I just wrote a blog post about my bucket list, if you’d like to find out more, check out my blog πŸ™‚


    I really like your recipes they rock πŸ™‚

  • Mmmm my mouth is watering, that looks delicious! Well done you on another great recipe! Little London Girl x

  • Tartar is my man’s favourite dish as well. He always orders it whenever they have it on the menu at a restaurant. This looks really simple (as I can most definitely not cook) I will have to treat him one night and make this for him!

    hellomissjordan.blogpsot.co.uk xx

  • Elizabeth

    Looks great! Sounds like you’re both foodies then! Any chance of a blog from his perspective one day?xx

  • Another win! Am looking forward to having something similar soon… it’s just too hot in the summer to attempt anything that requires ovens and heat!

  • I love how you recreated a meal from the restaurant! Thanks for sharing this yummy looking recipe! πŸ™‚


  • I always admire the tablecloth in your food posts, Rose. So pretty. Where is it from? (obvs. yummy looking food too…)

  • Annabeth Kane

    Y-U-M Rosie! I love your platter, is it from the Oscar de la Renta home collection? I would love to have one of my own!

  • CHG

    Love raw tuna..will have to try this. Good note about not going to the supermarket fish counter, I tried that once with sushi and with a blank stare was told they could not “legally tell me to eat it raw”. πŸ™‚ haha

    Thanks for the recipe!



  • Beccy

    This looks absolutely delicious!

    Beccy ~ http://www.bluebellandbumpkin.com

  • Jennifer Tate

    This looks delicious and so easy! Also, I made your triple chocolate bread last night – it’s definitely a favorite!

  • Mayra Nunez

    That’s it?! No.way. Pretty low-cal too, I presume!!

  • keepingitcaj

    Love this, Rose – definitely going on my “to-cook” list!
    Just FYI I think it is spelled “tartare” πŸ™‚

  • YUMMM! I’ve been scared of making this dish, but it actually looks fairly easy. I’ll have to give it a whirl!


  • Adaleta Avdic

    This is not something I would normally eat, but holy smokes you make it sound delicious!

  • Katie Brigstock

    This looks so delicious and fresh! I’ve never made tuna tartar before so will definitely have a go ! katie x


  • Sarah

    Wow, this looks amazing.. and sounds delicious! Tuna sashimi is always my favourite when I go for sushi, totally going to try this for myself… or maybe i’ll let Barrafina do the hard work!

    Sarah x


  • Anon

    Coriander and Cilantro not the same.

  • This looks lovely!! I am a bit scared of raw fish and ave never given tuna steak a go (I hate tuna from a can- blah!!) but I always up for new things πŸ™‚


  • Athena

    My friend and I were obsessing over this dish when we went to Barrafina, so thank you for putting up the recipe, I will definitely try it!

  • Thanks for the recipe Rosie. I will be sure to head down to the Sydney fish markets and pick me up some Toooona Steak. Rosie

  • This looks so delicious and easy (not to mention uber-healthy)! I will have to wait until I visit friends in Boston to whip this up as I am fairly certain that sashimi-quality is a non-entity here in VT. ;o)

    Meghan xo

  • MM this looks so good! Another sushi-like tuna thing that I enjoy is the Hawaiian Ahi Poke. Couldn’t stop munching on it while I was there!

  • OMG! This looks amazing & so easy to whip up. I’ve always refrained from making this type of dish or sushi at home due to getting the correct quality of tuna – now I’m on a mission to find some & re-create!!

    Hugs xoxo


  • Hi_D

    That sounds easy. I’d like to try this sometime.


  • Looks fab! Love tuna tartar never thought it was that easy, woop πŸ™‚ Where is the fish serving dish from? Very cute x

  • Samantha Bei

    I know what I’m making for dinner tonight!


  • Brittany Foley

    This looks simply scrumptious! I definitely want to give this a go. So simple!


    Life In and Out of Boston

  • Queenie Lee

    This looks so good! We caught tuna in Thailand and ate it on the boat straight after, it was lush πŸ™‚ xxx


  • This looks amazing Rosie!!! I love raw tuna (one of my favourites) and paired with avocado?! Sounds like a match made in heaven!

  • Yummmmm !! Looks so freshhhh πŸ˜€ Definitely have to ry this recipe (when summer actually will arrive :p )


  • Looks so fresh and delicious. x

  • Yum!!! I’m not a seafood person, but I’ve recently discovered I like raw tuna. I’ll have to give this a try!


  • Shea

    Ugh, that looks amazing! I always love a great tuna tataki salad, too. It’s got to be my favorite fish πŸ™‚ great post!


  • Clara Banana

    Nice Post. I am looking forward to try this recipe out!


  • Sarah Wilson

    Definitely one of my favourite dishes – though I like to cup the avocado in chunks and mix it through the tuna – and serve crispy poppadoms on the side. Sooo easy and totally delish! sold it to me!

    Sarahx aka http://thejuicypineappleblog.com/

  • giftofthefab

    wow! this sounds delish. My husband asked me to read this out loud….let’s face it, he’s the cook. I’m strictly decorative. Can’t wait to try this out and impress our friends!
    Love your blog!

  • giftofthefab

    This looks delish! My husband had me read it aloud to him, let’s face it he’s the cook. I’m strictly decorative. Can’t wait to try this out and impress our friends! I love your blog and pictures!

  • Amy Byrd Thompson

    A little wasabi in the avocado may be tasty too!

  • Love Barrafina and have foolishly never ordered the tuna tartar. Not sure whether to run there and order this or run to Moxon’s and make my own!

  • Katie

    Wow ok this looks so good right now…definitely an impressive but easy dish for date night! xxx

  • This looks fab! And so easy. I love trying to recreate dishes from my favourite restaurants!

  • Nina

    Oh wow, that looks too yummy for words:-) You are right about tuna tartar seeming a bit intimidating, but your post does seem to make it look easy. I’ll definitely try it out when we next have people over. Thanks for the recipe^_^

  • Chrissabella

    Thanks for the recipe, this looks so delicious and healthy!


  • Poppy

    This looks absolutely delicious!! I make raw fish recipes at home as much as I can!!
    The fish dish you used here is amazing, could you tell me where you got it please? Thanks!!! x

  • pauldunlop

    One of my all-time favourite Barrafina dishes. Gotta give this a go at home now!