Sous Vide Tuna with a Fennel Crust

There is not a lot to say about this except WOW! For any of you sous viders out there, this is an easy one with a low temperature and a short cook time. The fennel crust is simplicity itself. So, without faffing around, here’s the ingredients list.

My ingredients shots are used principally to remind me of what I used in the cooking. I served this with a nice soy mustard sauce. For the fish the ingredients are as follows;


  • 300gm piece of tuna loin
  • Rind of a lemon
  • A few sprigs of thyme
  • A teaspoon or two of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 2 teaspoons of fennel seeds

Side note on time and temperature. No matter what time and temperature I type into this recipe, it will attract comment from various sous vider types. Some saying I overcooked it, others saying I undercooked. I was happy. If you want to cook it less or more, knock yourself out, Though if you go too far under what I did, you might just do that. 

Slice nice big bits off the lemon (unwaxed) with a potato peeler (at least that’s what we call this device here in Ireland where we peel a lot of potatoes).

A peelin’ don’t you think?

Decorate both sides of the fish with the lemon rind and thyme sprigs.

Tuna, in the bag, decorated.

Pour in the olive oil before vacuum sealing the bag.

This oil has a particularly fine flavour and a delightful colour too.

Pop the sealed bag into your sous vide for an hour at 45ºC (113ºF). While that is going on, busy yourself dry frying the fennel seeds until they are aromatic and crunchy.

It really looks pretty before getting cooked.

The fish should come out looking something like this.

Lovely, delicate tuna steak.

Heat a cast iron pan to very hot and add a bit of oil. Remove the aromatics and season with the salt and pepper. Place it on the pan and sear on all sides. This will only take a couple of minutes. Avoid overcooking the fish.

I might have left it on a few seconds too long….

Sprinkle the fish with the fennel seeds, carve into nice slices and serve. It is beautiful with a simple sauce of english mustard powder mixed with soy sauce. Try it. It’s a really delightful dish.

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