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Marmitako (Basque Stew of Tuna, Potatoes, Peppers and Onions)

Marmitako (Basque Stew of Tuna, Potatoes, Peppers and Onions) 4.000
Jan 2, 2008

Spain has many dishes with humble origins. This one got its start on a fishing boat. It features the beautiful bonito tuna caught in the north of Spain and simple ingredients that could survive on a long voyage.

Those pressed for time could use strained, crushed tomatoes and jarred, roasted red peppers.


Servings: 4 - 6
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless yellowfin tuna fillets (at least 1 inch thick)
  • 2 pounds russet potatoes, boiled and peeled
  • 2 medium green bell peppers, roasted (see NOTE)
  • 1 1/4 cups Spanish extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2 slices day-old bread, preferably country-style
  • 1 pound plum tomatoes (5 to 6)
  • 3 cups thinly sliced onion (about 2 large onions)
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup cognac
  • 1 small guindilla chili pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped (may substitute your favorite small hot chili pepper)
  • 2 teaspoons Spanish smoked paprika
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 4 cups water
  • Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish

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Directions

Cut the tuna into 1-inch cubes; place on a plate, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. Use your hands to break the boiled, peeled potatoes into large chunks and place in a large bowl. Cut the roasted and skinned bell peppers into thin strips and place them on top of the potatoes in the bowl.

Line a plate with paper towels.

Heat 1 cup of the olive oil in a medium saucepan until it registers 300 degrees on a candy thermometer. Add the bread and fry for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until golden. Use tongs to transfer the bread to the prepared plate to drain.

Slice the tomatoes in half lengthwise; discard the seeds. Place a large-holed grater over a large mixing bowl. Rub the cut sides of the tomatoes over the grater until all of the flesh has been grated into pulp. Discard the skins.

Heat the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions, roasted bell pepper strips and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes, until the onions are golden brown. Add the wine and cognac; cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the alcohol evaporates. Then add the tomato pulp, guindilla pepper and smoked paprika, stirring to combine. Cook for 10 minutes, then season with 1 to 2 teaspoons of the salt. Add the potato chunks and fried bread, folding them into the mixture; the bread will break up eventually. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the water; cover and cook for 15 minutes, gently shaking the pot occasionally to prevent the potatoes from sticking.

Meanwhile, season the chilled tuna cubes with 1 teaspoon of salt, then add the tuna to the pot, stirring to combine. Cover and cook for 3 minutes. The tuna should be juicy inside and barely cooked through. Remove the pot from the heat and adjust seasoning as necessary. Garnish servings with chopped parsley and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve hot.


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Recipe Source

Adapted from "Jose Made in Spain," by chef Jose Andres, due out in fall 2008 (Clarkson Potter).

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

E-mail questions to the Food Section.

E-mail questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving (based on 6): 523


% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 14g 22%

Saturated Fat: 2g 10%

Cholesterol: 68mg 23%

Sodium: 717mg 30%

Total Carbohydrates: 51g 17%

Dietary Fiber: 5g 20%

Sugar: n/a

Protein: 41g


*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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