David Scott AllenProvencal RecipesSaladTaste

Slow-roasted Tuna and Fennel Salad

One of our favourite dishes from the Mediterranean is a salad of octopus, potatoes, celery, and olives, flavoured with extra virgin olive oil and lemon. We made it when we were in Venice years ago.

My “chore” today for Provence WineZine, was to pair a summer salad with a rosé from Commanderie de la Bargemone. So, I made some major changes to the recipe and came up with a completely new variation. Instead of octopus, I substituted a slow-roasted tuna steak that was seasoned well with salt, pepper, and fennel pollen. Rather than celery, I roasted some wedges of fennel bulb. The fennel and tuna worked perfectly with the olives, potatoes, and lemon.

Slow-roasted Tuna Salad wth Fennel and Potato

Tuna, Fennel, and Potato Salad

blankDavid Scott Allen
This is an easy salad to make. We served it at room temperature on a hot summer day, but it is lovely when it is still warm in cooler temperatures.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people


  • 1 large Fennel Bulb
  • 2 Yukon Gold Potatoes
  • 4 8-oz Tuna Fillets
  • 12 Kalamata Olives pitted
  • 1 lemon
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Fennel Pollen *
  • Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Fresh Parsley chopped


  • Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • Clean and trim the fennel bulb, slice in half, then slice each half into 3/4-inch wedges, keeping the root end intact. Place wedges on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes, turning once halfway through. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature.
  • While fennel is roasting, bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the unpeeled potatoes and cook until tender and easily pierced with a knife — about 30 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  • Reduce oven to 200°F (95°C). Rub some olive oil over the tuna steak and season with fennel pollen, salt, and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 20-30 minutes; tuna should be slightly pink in the center. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature.
  • When everything has cooled to room temperature, peel the potatoes, and cut into 3/4-inch chunks. Place the potatoes in a large bowl and add the fennel wedges and olives. Drizzle liberally with your best-quality olive oil. Finely zest the lemon and add the zest to the bowl. Squeeze the juice from half the lemon on top of the vegetables. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and gently toss the vegetables; taste for seasoning. Adjust oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper as needed. Cut the tuna fillet into 1-inch cubes and add to the other ingredients. Once again, toss gently to mix the ingredients together.
  • Serve immediately sprinkled with parsley, or chill for later and let it come to room temperature for serving to bring out the flavours.


* If you don’t have fennel pollen, grind some fennel seeds and sift out the hulls. The resulting powder will work.
Keyword Fennel, Olives, Potatoes, Salad, Tuna
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David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen is the author, photographer, and cook behind Cocoa & Lavender, a weekly food blog based in Tucson, Arizona. Passionate about travel, he especially enjoys eating traditional foods and learning local customs, whether in the United States or around the globe.

David's first trip to France took place when he was 14, and he returned as often as possible thereafter. However, it wasn't until his 50th birthday that he finally made it south to Provence. The beauty, history, charm, warmth, cuisine, and - of course - the rosé wines captured his heart. He shares his Provençal recipes here on Perfectly Provence, and his food and wine pairings monthly on the Provence WineZine.

David is a firm believer that sharing a meal with friends around the table is one of life's greatest pleasures. And if it happens to be in Provence, all the better!

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