Elena Arzak's Wooden Tuna

Serves 4


For the marinade

30 gr. olive oil

100 gr. fried hazelnuts

50 gr. fried peanuts

20 gr. apple juice

30 gr. lemon juice

10 gr. basil

Pinch of thyme

Salt, pepper, sugar


For the tuna

600 gr. loin of tuna (150 gr./person)

Salt, ginger


For the wood

4 sheets of Kyogi wood (13x13 cm)

3 drops of natural forest essence

20 gr. water


For the tomato cork

500 gr. crushed tomato

175 gr. onion

70 gr. green capsicum

1 clove of garlic

2 basil leaves

1 gr. cochineal

2 gr. agar

5 c.s. olive oil

Salt, pepper and sugar


For the black mushroom marinade

1 onion

100 gr. powdered corn mushroom

½  dl. olive oil

Salt, powdered ginger


For the sauce

80 gr. poached onion

250 gr. poultry stock

4 tablespoons of malt whisky

1.5 gr. of powdered barley malt

Pinch of cinnamon and cumin

Salt and pepper


For the chopped nuts

5 fried marcota almonds

10 fried peanuts

1 fried nutmeg



To serve: 4 crystal bells and some lemon verbena leaves


For the marinade

Process all the ingredients together. Season with salt and pepper and a little sugar.


For the tuna

Divide the tuna into 4 portions and lightly smoke it for 4 minutes in a smoker. Once smoked, season, butter with the marinade and cook on the flat grill, ensuring the fillet remains juicy.


For the wood

Bottle the sheets of Kyogi wood in the water and essence. Leave to soak for 24 hours.


For the tomato cork

Heat the olive oil, throw in the garlic, green capsicum and the onion, all finely chopped. Fry over a medium heat and then add the crushed tomato. Leave to cook for 30 minutes. Add the basil leaves, finely julienned, and a pinch of sugar. Cook for 5 minutes and then add the cochineal. Process the mixture and strain. 

Measure 200g of the sauce and add the agar. Lightly boil, season with salt and pepper and turn into ‘cork’ moulds. Allow to cool and harden.


For the black mushroom marinade

Finely dice the onion and place it in a frypan with half the olive oil. Once caramelised, add the rest of the ingredients. Lightly cook and process to produce a thick pulp. Season with salt and pepper and a small amount of ginger.


For the sauce

Flambe the poached onion in whisky over medium heat. Pour the stock over the mixture and leave to cook over medium heat for 20 minutes. Strain and infuse with cinnamon and oregano. Leave for 5 minutes and strain again. Add the barley malt and season with salt and pepper.  


For the chopped nuts

Chop the nuts into reasonably large pieces and season with salt and pepper.


Final Presentation

On a warmed plate, place the Kyogi wood, followed by the tuna, then the chopped nuts and the tomato ‘cork’. Paint the surface with the black mushroom marinade. Lightly season with salt and decorate with a few lemon verbena leaves. Paint the inside of the crystal bells with the black marinade and then cover the plate with the bells. In an instant, a vapor will be generated, creating a microfauna with aromas of wood and the forest.