Seared Yellowfin Tuna Salad With Blood Orange Vinaigrette

Posted on by on April 9th, 2011 | 11 Comments »

Finding good sea food in the middle of the Negev dessert is almost next to impossible. Most of our fish selection here is flash frozen and often comes in a variety of white fish I have never heard of, Nile pike anyone? On the rare (very rare) occasion I happen to find something wonderful like yellowfin tuna at the  new specialty store, I get excited and stock up.

Before I started really enjoying fish, tuna was the only thing I would order. It still remains high on my list of favorite fishes. A favorite among many with its beautiful color, lean, firm meat and full flavor, yellowfin tuna can be eaten raw, cooked, seared or smoked. Yellowfin tuna has a mild flavoring and has year round accessibility which is why it can adapt to so many types of recipes. It has a whole lot of omega 3 fatty acids and is low in fat and in calories. My favorite way to eat it is raw, slightly seared or coated with sesame seeds or panko.

The weather is warming up and on the warmer days heavier foods can just weigh you down. This salad is the perfect solution to a light meal. The seared yellowfin tuna over wilted baby greens, braised fennel and avocado, is the answer to those warm evening dinners. The salad really came together with what I had in the house and the flavors played off each other in wonderful harmony. With a few blood oranges left over from my trip to Tel Aviv, I mixed up a light and tangy blood orange vinaigrette to drizzle over the salad. If you don’t have blood oranges try using tangerines as I’m sure they would work just as well.


For Salad

4 Ounces Yellowfin Tuna
2 1/2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
10 Ounces Baby Spinach
1 Large Fennel Bulb, Sliced
2 Blood Oranges, Peeled and Cut into slices
1 Avocado, Cut into cubes
Salt and Pepper

For Blood Orange Vinaigrette

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 1/2 Teaspoons Fresh Lemon Juice
3 1/2 Teaspoons Fresh Blood Orange Juice
1 Teaspoon White Wine Vinegar
1 Shallot, Minced
1/4 Teaspoon Lemon Zest
1/2 Teaspoon Blood Orange Zest
Salt and Pepper to taste


Rinse baby spinach and put in a skillet, cook over medium heat until beginning to wilt.
Remove from pan and set aside.
In a medium sized skillet, heat 1 1/2 Tablespoons oil.
Season tuna with salt and pepper and cook over medium high heat to sear, about 1 1/2 minutes per side.
Remove from pan and set aside to cool.
When tuna is cooled, cut into slices.
Heat remaining Tablespoon of olive oil and saute the fennel until starting to become tender, about 3 minutes.
In a mixing bowl add all the dressing ingredients and whisk until combined.
Season with salt and pepper.
In a bowl toss together the wilted spinach, braised fennel, avocado and blood orange slices. Mix in 3/4 of the dressing.
Divide salad among 2 plates and top with sliced tuna and drizzle with remaining dressing.



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  1. Posted on: 4-10-2011

    This salad looks incredible! I love the Blood Orange Vinaigrette. I have to give this salad a try. 🙂

    • BethMichelle
      Posted on: 4-10-2011

      Thanks Christina! The blood orange vinaigrette really makes the salad pop. Let me know if you try it!

  2. Posted on: 4-10-2011

    Hi Beth! Hmm yellowfin tuna and spinach! I like how you combine spinach and fish as a salad! True, I’m taking it for granted that fish is one of the easy ingredients to get but I forget everywhere is not the same. I love this blood orange vinaigrette. I don’t like creamy kind of dressing but I love anything citrus taste! I’ll make this dressing soon!

    • BethMichelle
      Posted on: 4-10-2011

      Nami, Im not one for creamy dressings either unless its a creamy balsamic vinaigrette from the Beverly Hills Cafe in Miami, FL (not to get too specific or anything, but they have the best creamy balsamic). Let me know if you try this vinaigrette, its super easy to mix up and great on any salad!

  3. Posted on: 4-10-2011

    I agree with Nami… the dressing is amazing (especially with fish)! I’ll try this recipe soon!

    • BethMichelle
      Posted on: 4-10-2011

      Giulietta, if you try it let me know how it comes out for you!!

  4. Posted on: 4-11-2011

    This dish look amazing! The blood orange gives it such a brightness! I eat tuna all the time and this dressing sounds perfect! I’m so trying it this week. Thanks!

    • BethMichelle
      Posted on: 4-11-2011

      Thanks Meghan! Let me know how you like it!

  5. Posted on: 4-11-2011

    I was getting such good blood oranges a few weeks aqo… the citrus is one for the season, now, I’m afraid.I’ll try your salad anyway…. I love tuna.

    • BethMichelle
      Posted on: 4-11-2011

      Katie, you can use tangerines in place of blood oranges and I’m sure it will turn out just as wonderful! I wish blood oranges were available all the time!

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