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Beef Tenderloin-Wrapped Tuna with Butternut Squash Purée and a Sauté of Fava Beans and Mushrooms

Servings: 3

This impressive presentation of yellowfin tuna wrapped in a thin sheet of beef tenderloin is from Chef Brian Katz at New Orleans’ Red Fish Grill. The trick is to sear the beef quickly in a hot pan, so that the tuna inside stays raw, almost like a piece of sushi.


For the tuna

  • 2 Tbs. unflavored powdered gelatin
  • 9 oz. yellowfin tuna, cleaned and chopped
  • 9 oz. beef tenderloin, cleaned

For the butternut squash puree

  • 1-1/2 lb. butternut squash, peeled and seeded and cut into 1-inch dice
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1-1/2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper

For the favas and mushrooms

  • 1 lb. hulled fava beans
  • 4 oz. (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter
  • 1 lb. crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 Tbs. minced garlic
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Canola oil, for searing


Make the tenderloin-wrapped tuna

  • Dissolve the gelatin in 6 Tbs. of water. Mix the tuna with half of the gelatin mixture and roll into a cylinder using plastic wrap to encase.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  • Butterfly the beef tenderloin lengthwise. Place the beef between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound it to 1/8-inch thick using a meat mallet. Remove the top layer of plastic wrap. Remove the chilled cylinder of tuna from its plastic wrap and place it in the center of the beef tenderloin.  Spread the ‘seam’ edge of the tenderloin with the remaining gelatin mixture.  Roll the beef into a tight cylinder so that the tuna is directly in the middle and encased by the beef.  Secure the roll tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Make the squash purée

  • Combine the squash, milk and cream in a large saucepan and simmer until the squash is tender enough to mash. Strain the squash from cooking liquid, reserving the liquid. Fill a blender container 3/4 of the way with cooked squash and process until smooth, adding just enough reserved cooking liquid so that the squash will move and purée in the blender. Transfer back to the saucepan and keep warm. Continue this process in batches until all squash is a smooth purée.  (You can discard any leftover cooking liquid). Season the purée with salt, nutmeg and white pepper.

Cook the fava beans and mushrooms

  • Bring 2 gallons of salted water to a boil, put the fava beans in the water and cook for 45 seconds. Transfer the favas to an ice bath with a slotted spoon. Once cooled, remove outer shells from fava beans.

    In a large skillet, heat the butter until foaming subsides. Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the fava beans, season with salt and pepper and cook until heated through.

To finish the dish

  • Remove the tuna-beef cylinder from plastic wrap and season with salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add enough canola oil to coat the pan, and set the cylinder in the hot pan. Sear the beef, turning each side so that a nice crust forms.  It is imperative to do this very quickly so that the tuna inside does not cook.

    Slice the tenderloin-wrapped tuna into 1-inch-thick discs. For each serving, place 2 oz. of the butternut squash purée in a line on a plate, top with the sautéed fava bean and mushroom mixture, and arrange one third of the beef-wrapped tuna slices over the mushroom mixture.nowfe promo box


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