Street-style tostadas with seared tuna & wood-grilled veg

Street-style tostadas with seared tuna & wood-grilled veg

Chris Middleton

Taking the tostadas of the Baja coast as inspiration, these backyard barbecue tostadas are great with all types of barbecue toppings – grilled meats, flavoursome cheeses and, of course, great seafood.


Quantity Ingredient

Wood-grilled vegetables

Quantity Ingredient
3 red capsicums
3 red onions, unpeeled and quartered with roots attached
olive oil, for drizzling
sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 green zucchinis, cut lengthways into 1 cm thick slices
200ml sherry vinegar
200g sugar
1 large handful oregano leaves, roughly chopped


Quantity Ingredient
6 Tortilla dough, small homemade masa flour tortillas
or 6 store-bought tortillas
100ml sunflower oil, for frying
sea salt, to taste


Quantity Ingredient
large pinch ground cumin
large pinch smoked paprika
large pinch salt
3 x 200g albacore or yellow fin tuna steaks
100ml extra-virgin olive oil
2 limes, juiced
2 garlic cloves, crushed


Quantity Ingredient
300ml Veracruz sauce
or 300ml Sesame pipian
or 300ml Corn, prawn & bacon tacos, Jalapeño & lime crema
2 avocados, sliced
1 small handful oregano leaves
1 small handful basil or flat-leaf parsley
2 jalapenos, thinly sliced


  1. Preheat a wood or coal barbecue until the coals have a thin coating of grey ash. Add presoaked aromatic wood, such as mallee oak, hickory or ironbark. Alternatively, if using a gas barbecue, soak smaller wood chips and place them in a smoking box on your barbecue.
  2. To prepare the wood-grilled vegetables, grill the capsicums, turning occasionally, until they are blackened all over and beginning to soften. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside to steam and cool slightly for 10 minutes.
  3. Toss the onion in olive oil and season with salt and pepper and grill, turning occasionally, for 5–10 minutes, until softened and lightly charred all over. Drizzle the zucchini with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 1–2 minutes on each side, until just cooked and lightly charred. Transfer the onion and zucchini to a tray and set aside to cool.
  4. Meanwhile combine the vinegar, sugar and oregano in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat and simmer until reduced to a rich coating consistency. Set aside to cool.
  5. Once cooled, peel the onions and trim off the root. Separate the onion layers and cut each layer in half into neat petal-shaped pieces. Slice the zucchini to make neat ribbons. Peel and seed the capsicums and slice lengthways into neat strips. Pour the marinade over the vegetables, season with salt and drizzle with olive oil.
  6. To prepare the tostadas, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium–high heat. Shallow-fry the tortillas in batches for 1 minute on each side, or until crisp and golden. Transfer to paper towel to drain. Lightly season with salt.
  7. To prepare the tuna, combine the spices and salt in a small bowl then season the fish liberally on both sides. Combine the oil, lime and garlic in a medium bowl. Dip the tuna steaks into the oil and lime mixture and grill for 2 minutes on each side, turning every minute, until seared. For a more well-cooked tuna portion, finish in the oven or on a cooler part of the barbecue. Cut into thin slices.
  8. To assemble, spread the tostadas with your chosen sauce, arrange the vegetables, tuna and avocado slices attractively on top and scatter with herbs and jalapeño.
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