Marmitako (Basque Potato Tuna Soup)

Marmitako (Basque Potato Tuna Soup)

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2 Tbsp olive oil
1 red pepper, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
6 medium (or 4 large) waxy red or yellow potatoes, peeled and broken into chunks (see above)
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 lb fresh tuna (albacore, if possible), cut into 1" cubes
salt and pepper


Heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the pepper, garlic and potatoes, and saute for several minutes, until the pepper and garlic have softened. Add the tomato paste, and enough water to cover everything by about 2". Season with salt, bring to a boil, and simmer, covered, for at least an hour and a half, until quite tender and flavorful.

When the soup is about 20 minutes from being done, heat the remaining tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tuna, season liberally with salt, and saute for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until firm but not fully cooked. Add the cubes to the soup pot, and simmer gently for another 15 minutes to meld the flavors.