Tuna Balls

by Rachael Ray Show Staff 9:00 AM, December 11, 2014


Aired December 11, 2014

Serves 6-8 as an appetizer

1 1/2 pounds sustainable tuna steak
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons capers, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup lightly toasted pine nuts
1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 egg, beaten
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs, lightly toasted
1/2 cup grated Pecorino cheese
3 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Lemon wedges, to serve or tomato sauce for topping

For the Simple Tomato Sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, crushed by hand
1 cup passata or tomato purée
A handful of basil, torn
Salt and pepper


In a food processor, pulse the tuna to finely chop and transfer to a mixing bowl. Season tuna with salt and pepper; add capers, lemon zest, pine nuts, parsley, oregano, chili flakes, egg, breadcrumbs, cheese and EVOO. Mix to combine and chill 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Roll balls into large, walnut-sized balls and roast until cooked through and lightly browned. Serve topped with tomato sauce or lemon wedges alongside.

For the Simple Tomato Sauce:
Heat oil and butter over medium heat until butter foams; add onions and garlic. Season with oregano, salt and pepper; cover and sweat 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add stock, tomatoes and passata, and bring to a bubble. Reduce heat to a low simmer, stir in torn basil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook down 25-30 minutes. Makes 1 quart of sauce.