Peter Kuruvita shares his recipe for the popular spicy Sri Lankan dish devilled tuna. "All the vegetables in this dish should be crunchy," says Peter "so it's important you add them to the wok in the correct order". You can substitute the tuna with beef, chicken or more vegetables.






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (72 votes)


  • 300 g tuna fillet, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 sprig curry leaves, plus extra to serve
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, peeled, quartered
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled, finely chopped
  • 2 leeks, washed, chopped
  • 3 banana chillies, chopped
  • 2 long red chillies, finely chopped, plus extra to serve
  • 2 green chillies, finely chopped, plus extra to serve

Sweet and sour sauce

  • 3 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp vinegar

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time 10 minutes

Place the tuna in a bowl with salt, chilli powder, curry leaves and lime juice. Stir to coat the tuna and set aside to marinate for 10 minutes.

To make the sweet and sour sauce, combine the tomato sauce and vinegar and set aside until ready to use.

Heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Once it reaches smoking point, add the onion, garlic and leek. Cook for a few minutes, until the mixture is fragrant and the onion is translucent. Add the chillies and fry for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the tuna and toss to coat in the spice mixture. Stir in the sweet and sour sauce and cover. Leave to cook for a few minutes, or until the tuna is just cooked.

Season with salt and pepper and serve sprinkled with curry leaves and the reserved chilli.