Recipe: Sticky tuna with ribbon noodles


Fish has always been one of my favourite foods. I am always surprised how little some people cook fish at home because it is actually one of the easiest foods to cook and one of the quickest. My favourite meal out would be sushi but I do not make it at home because I think that is best left to the Japanese who prepare it so beautifully that it is almost a work of art. However when it comes to tuna, I like mine quite rare. Over- cooked tuna is dry and tasteless, whereas if you cook tuna for just a few minutes it can taste sublime.

This Asian-style recipe perfectly complements the texture and flavour of fresh, lightly cooked tuna with its blend of mirin, sweet chilli sauce, honey, soy sauce and rice wine vinegar. A perfect summer meal that only takes minutes to prepare.

Annabel Karmel has written 19 books on feeding babies, children and families. For more recipes, visit

Makes two portions


For the noodles:
● 1 tbsp sunflower oil
● 1 clove garlic, crushed
● Half tsp grated fresh ginger
● 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks / ribbons
● Half red pepper – cut into matchsticks
● 50g baby corn – cut into 4 lengthways
● Half courgette cut into matchsticks/ribbons
● 2 fat spring onions, thinly sliced
● 75g medium Chinese noodles prepared following the packet instructions (or use 150g ready to use noodles)
● 1.5 tbsp soy sauce
● 1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

For the tuna:
● 2 tbsp mirin
● 2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
● 2 tbsp honey
● 1 tsp soy sauce
● 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
● 1 tsp sunflower oil
● 2 x 125g tuna steaks approx 1.5cm thick


● Mix together the mirin, chilli sauce, honey, soy sauce and vinegar for the tuna and set aside.
● Heat 1 tbsp of sunflower oil in a wok , add garlic and ginger and sizzle for 30 seconds, then add the carrot, pepper and baby corn and stir fry for 2 minutes.
● Add the courgette and spring onion and stir fry for one minute.
● Add the noodles and stir fry for 2 minutes until searing hot.
● Add the tuna and cook for 30 seconds on each side. Transfer to a plate.
● Turn the heat down and add the mirin mixture and boil for 1 to 2 minutes until thick and syrupy.
● Remove from the heat and cool slightly, then add the tuna and turn to coat in the sauce.
● Divide noodles between plates. Serve with the tuna (which you can cut into slices) and spoon over the remaining glaze from the pan.

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