Saturday, March 27, 2010

Seared tuna

Two posts today! Why? Because I'm sooo behind and I have so many back-logged posts to make that if I don't do more than one a day I'll never get caught up to real-time. Enjoy!

A while back you saw some sushi I made from some sashimi grade tuna I scored at Trader Joes.  Well, this here is the second dish I made from that package of two giant tuna steaks.

I did a quick look through the internets to find a recipe for seared tuna that wasn't peppercorn encrusted.  I dunno about you, but I think peppercorn encrusted anything is overrated.  It's OK, but the pepper just takes over too much for my taste.  And seared tuna is such a delicate flavor, all that pepper kills this great cut of fish.

So I decided to hunt for a recipe that was light, citrusy, and had a nice Asian twist to it.  It was partly inspired by these different soy sauce mixtures that my friend So gave me.  I was dying to try them out and a crispy side dish to go with the seared tuna was the perfect opportunity.

Tuna- meet your mate for the evening: broccoli slaw + MSG laden Kamada Salad Soy (soy sauce mixture). (Note: the broccoli slaw is not a prepared cole slaw. It's just raw julienned strips of broccoli and carrots to be used in a slaw salad)

I pieced this recipe together from a few different sources. It's been a while since I made this, but I could never forget how delicious it was. Man, makes me wish I had some tuna at home right now...

I feel this dish needs a fancy name because seriously, this is restaurant quality food folks.  Rivals tuna I've had for some pretty hefty bills.  My restaurant description of this dish at Chez Jacque (pronounced "shay ja-KAY") would probably go something like this: Seared tuna atop crisp asian salad with ginger soy glaze.  That way I could charge $25 for something that cost me ~$7 to make at home.

The first thing I did was prepare my slaw salad by mixing it with some of the salad soy sauce So gave me (say that 5 times fast).  Arrange it in a nice mound as the fish will go on top of this and set it to the side.

Then get your ginger glaze ready.  This recipe comes together in less than 5 minutes, literally, so you want to make sure everything is ready to go. Mix some mirin, soy sauce, ginger and lemon juice in a tiny bowl.

OK, once everything is ready it's time to prepare the fish.  First thing you want to do is get a non-stick pan nice and hot.  You've gotta pre-heat the pan to get a nice crust on your fish.

Season the tuna with some lemon juice, salt and pepper, and just throw it into the preheated pan.  Can you see the bottom of this cut starting to sear and cook up? That's exactly what you want.

Cook each side for 1-2 minutes.  Feel free to cook it more or less- whatever works for you.  I prefer mine almost sushi style so I went for a shorter cooking time.  As you can see, mine's crusted nicely but barely cooked.  mmmmmmm.

Once you're done remove the tuna and place it on top of the slaw salad.  Reduce the heat in the pan and throw in the ginger soy sauce mixture.  Allow it to cook briefly until it's slightly thickened.

Then just pour the soy sauce over the fish and eat immediately.

SOOOO GOOD! Lemon is hands-down my favorite complement to fish dishes.  But lemon alone on tuna wouldn't work as well (compared to a simple squeeze of lemon juice on a light white fish).  The ginger with soy sauce really rescued the dish and added a fuller flavor without overpowering it or making it too heavy.

And did you notice that there is absolutely no added fat to the recipe? No oil, no butter, no nuthin'.  Perfect dish for a warm spring or summer day.

Buen Provecho,
Jackie (or should I say, "Ja-KAY!")


2 tuna steaks
2 TBSP mirin (substitute: 1 TBSP white wine + 1/2 tsp sugar)
1 + 1 TBSP lemon juice
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP ginger, grated
salt and pepper

Prepare soy sauce mixture by combining mirin, 1 TBSP lemon juice, soy sauce and ginger in small bowl.
Preheat stainless steel skillet on medium high heat for ~2 minutes.
Rub tuna steaks with remaining 1 TBSP lemon juice, salt and pepper
Cook tuna 1-2 min on each side. Remove from heat.
Lower heat to medium and add the rest of the ingredients. Allow sauce to reduce to desired consistency, ~30-90 seconds.


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