Tuna is a very versatile fish with a hardier consistency that enables it to take strong flavours. This atún encebollado recipe utilises tuna cubes and caramelised onions. It’s filling, it’s simple, and it’s tasty. Enjoy!
Ingredients for atún encebollado (serves two)
- Half a kilo of fresh tuna, cut into bite sized cubes.
- 2 medium size onions. Red onions are perfect but white onions will work well too.
- 2 medium garlic cloves.
- 1 bay leaf.
- 1/4 teaspoon of sugar.
- 100 ml water
- a good pinch of paprika
- a good pinch of dried oregano.
- salt and pepper to taste.
- A good splash (about a tablespoon) of sherry vinegar
- Olive oil for cooking.
- Drizzle a little olive oil into a deep frying pan and bring to a medium heat.
- Throw in your tuna cubes and cook until the cubes just start to turn golden-brown.
- Remove the tuna and set aside.
- Finely slice or chop the garlic.
- Finely slice the onions.
- Throw both into the frying pan and add a teeny bit more oil if you need to.
- Bring the pan to a medium heat.
- Add the sugar, a pinch each of salt and pepper and stir well.
- Lower the heat so it is barely on.
- Keep cooking the onions until they brown but be careful not to burn them. Stir them regularly.
- The key here is to cook your onions as slowly as possible until they’re of an oozy, soft consistency.
- Add the sherry vinegar and water and bring the heat up.
- Use a wooden or plastic spoon to make sure you scrape all the good stuff from the bottom of the pan – there’s loads of flavour there!
- Leave cooking for another couple of minutes before adding the tuna back into the pan and stirring well.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the paprika and oregano.
- Serve hot.
Spain Buddy tips
- The key to this recipe is to use the best quality sherry vinegar (from Jerez if you can get it) and good quality fresh tuna.
- But – if you’re really lazy – follow the cooking steps for the onions and then empty a tin of cooked tuna into them before stirring and heating through. The flavour won’t be as good, but it’s a fast and easy lunch.
- You can also cook the onions separately and use them as a topping for grilled or pan-fried tuna steaks, pork or chicken.
- This dish works really well with chips, patatas bravas and rice.
- The onions work like a treat in a steak or pork sandwich too!
- We’ve also had success by adding some sliced green peppers (capsicums) – but make sure it is sliced as thinly as possible so it caramelises with the onions.
- If you like your food with a little kick, sprinkle in a pinch of crushed dried chillies at the same time as the sherry vinegar.