Mélange of Spicy Big-Eye Tuna with Mango, Avocado, and Crispy Shallots

Patrick O'Connell

The Inn at Little Washington - Washington, VA

Patrick O’ Connell’s take on tuna tartare incorporates the bright flavor of mango with creamy avocado and crispy fried shallots.


  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 shallot, sliced into thin rings
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 1/2 teaspoons Vietnamese fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 1/2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 pound fresh sushi-grade tuna, diced (about 3 cups)
  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
  • 1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted and diced
  • 1 fresh jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Sugar to taste
  • Cilantro leaves for garnish
  • Shrimp chips (optional)


In a deep fryer or heavy pot, heat the oil to 300ºF.

Dredge the shallot rings in flour quickly and shake off the excess flour. Add the shallots to the hot oil and cook until they just turn golden brown, about 1 minute. Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the oil and drain them on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt.

Whisk together the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, fish sauce, peanut oil, and sugar until sugar is dissolved.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the tuna, avocado, mango, jalapeño, red onion, cilantro, red pepper flakes, and 2 tablespoons of the fried shallots. Gently mix with a spatula to combine. Dress the tuna mixture with the lime juice and 4 tablespoons of the soy sauce mixture. Season to taste with the salt and sugar. Mix once more with the spatula.

To serve, garnish with cilantro leaves and fried shrimp chips.


6 servings