Spring superstars: Griddled tuna with wild garlic and pecan pesto 

Spring superstars: Griddled tuna with wild garlic and pecan pesto

When wild garlic is not available other soft fragrant leaves, including watercress, spinach, basil and parsley, or a mixture, will make lovely pestos.


50g wild garlic, thickly sliced

30g pecans, roughly chopped

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

a squeeze of lemon juice

2 x 120g yellowfin tuna steaks (about 2cm thick)

2 heads of chicory, base trimmed, halved lengthways and cut into strips

100g samphire (or rock samphire), picked over

1 tbsp nonpareille capers, rinsed

  • If your wild garlic is in flower, then reserve a few white petals to decorate. Whizz the wild garlic leaves, and half the pecans to a paste in a food processor, then add 2 tbsp oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and a little salt and pulse again to combine.
  • Heat a ridged griddle pan over a medium-high heat until hot. Brush the tuna fillets either side with ½(half) tbsp oil and season. Fry for about 2 minutes either side until just cooked through (they can also be seared in a non-stick frying pan). Transfer to a couple of warm plates.
  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining ½(half) tbsp oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat and stir-fry the samphire and chicory for 4-6 minutes until tender and the chicory is golden.
  • Pile the veg on to plates with the tuna. Spoon the pesto to the side and scatter everything with the remaining pecans and capers, plus a few of the wild garlic flower petals if you have them.