Recipe for Seared Tuna Niçoise from Tesoro Club Chef (Was at French Laundry)

For over 25 years, Chef Rettig has led culinary teams in platinum-rated golf and yacht communities, boutique-style resorts, and AAA guide-rated restaurants. Rettig was mentored in classical French cuisine by some of the industry’s greatest, including Jean Louis Palladin at the Watergate Hotel in Washington DC and Roger Putier at La Petite Auberge in Newport, Rhode Island. Since then, he worked at some of the top restaurants in the US, including The French Laundry in Napa Valley, California; Frenchman’s Reserve in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; and the Cullasaja Club in Highlands, North Carolina. Rettig prides himself on being a hands-on chef, sharing his passion with his team to create unique culinary dishes from scratch.

Thanks! –Debbie

Seared Tuna Niçoise



6 servings

  •            ¾ pound red potatoes
  •            1½ tablespoons Dijon mustard
  •            5 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed and chopped (1½ tablespoons)
  •            1½ tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  •            7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  •            2 teaspoons salt
  •            3 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  •            1½ cups water
  •            ¾ pound string beans (preferably haricot verts), tips and strings snapped off
  •            1 yellow pepper
  •            2 very ripe medium-size tomatoes ( ¾ pounds)
  •            1½ cups sliced red onions
  •            1 cup nicoise or black oil-cured olives
  •            1 pound fresh tuna
  •            1 teaspoon canola oil
  •            About 1 dozen red lettuce leaves
  •            1 cup (loose) basil leaves, shredded into large pieces


  •            Step 1

Place the potatoes in a saucepan, cover with cool water and bring the water to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce the heat to low and boil gently for 25 to 35 minutes, until the potatoes are tender but still firm when pierced with a fork. Drain off the water and set the potatoes aside until cool enough to slice.

  •            Step 2

Meanwhile, prepare the dressing. In a large bowl, mix together the mustard, garlic, vinegar, olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper. Whisk until it comes together.

  •            Step 3

Peel the potatoes, if desired, and cut into ½-inch slices. Toss with the dressing.

  •            Step 4

Bring the 1½ cups of water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the beans, cover and return to a boil. Boil over high heat for 1 to 3 minutes (less for haricot verts and more for larger beans) until just tender but slightly firm to the bite. Drain and run under cold water for a few seconds to stop the cooking and preserve the bright green color. Cut the beans in half.

  •            Step 5

Peel the yellow pepper as best you can with a vegetable peeler (much easier to do if the pepper is firm and thick-walled). Then cut the pepper through the pleats, remove and discard the seeds and continue peeling the skin from the pieces. Pile up the peeled pepper wedges and cut them into thin julienne strips (about 1½ cups). Cut the tomatoes in half crosswise, press out the seeds and cut the unpeeled flesh into 1-inch pieces.

  •            Step 6

No more than 1 hour before serving, add the beans, yellow pepper, red onions, tomatoes and black olives to the potatoes. Mix well.

  •            Step 7

When almost ready to serve, heat 1 large cast-iron or heavy skillet over high heat for about 2 minutes, until very hot. Sprinkle the tuna with the remaining 2 teaspoons of black pepper and 1 teaspoon of salt and then roll in the canola oil. Place the tuna steak in the hot skillet and sauté over high heat for about 2 minutes, turning once, until lightly browned on the outside and cooked until rare on the inside. Cut into ½-inch slices.

  •            Step 8

To serve, line a large platter with the lettuce leaves. Mound the salad niçoise in the center of the platter and place the sliced tuna and the basil leaves on top. Serve immediately.

About Tesoro Club

Tesoro Club is located 30 minutes north of the Palm Beaches on Florida’s Treasure Coast. An enviable location surrounded by endless waterways, pristine beaches, and a relaxed Florida lifestyle, Tesoro Club offers private club, social and golf memberships, which include two Clubhouses, 9 Har-Tru tennis courts, 11 pickleball courts, two dining venues, a fitness center, a full-service spa, and a heated swimming pool. Tesoro Club is also home to two 18-hole championship golf courses.

A collection of new luxury homes includes two of the nation’s top builders – WCI Communities and Toll Brothers – as well as signature home builders Ecclestone Signature Homes, GHO Homes and Janssen Custom Home Builders, LLC. New designer models are now open and move-in homes are currently available for sale. For more information on Membership or available real estate, the community’s Welcome Center is now open daily at 125 SE Via Tesoro Blvd. Visit or call 772-345-4000 for more information.