Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Beginner's Cookbook -- Seared Tuna

Ooooh man.  This recipe?  Was amazing.  I'd never in my life cooked tuna before (unless you count taking a fork to dig it out of a can and mixing it with mayo, lemon juice, and garlic salt "cooking tuna"), and this was an amazing first experience.

The main reason tuna scared me so much was because of the uncookedness of it all.  Whenever you see seared tuna, it looks. . .raw.  Which it sort of is.  But what I discovered was that you don't have to leave it like that.  You can cook it straight through if you want.  It's just that it's probably better cooked the way you're supposed to cook it.

That being said, I about set my kitchen on fire making this, between accidentally dripping olive oil on a burner and then by not heeding the recipe's instructions to brush the fish with the oil rather than heating it in the pan and putting the fish into the heated oil.  Live and learn, right?

I also didn't get to take a picture of the ingredients, because it was done in two parts -- during lunch, I put together the maranade for the fish and let it sit, and then later, I made the salsa.  I made a few adjustments to this one, and it turned out fantastically.  Even Dennis, who was emphatic that he does not like tuna loved this recipe.  All in all, a good first tuna experience.

Also, sorry that I've been using the wrong abbreviation for Tablespoon.  I had no idea! 
Seared Tuna

Serves 2 - 4, depending on how much tuna you use

For the fish

2 - 4 tuna steaks (I used two big ones and a small one)

2 Tbsp. soy sauce
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 Tbsp. olive oil

For the salsa
4 scallions, trimmed and finely chopped
5 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
Pinch of chili flakes
1 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. olive oil

Put the tuna in a shallow, non-metallic dish.  In a separate bowl, mix together soy sauce, lime zest, and lime juice.  Pour over fish and allow to marinate 1-2 hours, or if possible, overnight.  (Mine marinated for about 5 hours.)

Combine scallions, tomatoes, chili, oil, and vinegar in a small bowll to make the salsa.  Season if desired.  Set aside for 15-30 minutes to allow the flavors to mix.

Preheat a pan large enough to hold the fish over high heat for 2-3 minutes.  Brush the fish with oil (DO THIS!) and place in the hot pan for 2-3 minutes.  Do not shift the fish until this time is up.  Brush the side that's up with olive oil (making sure not to set your kitchen on fire) and turn. 

Cook for 2-3 more minutes without moving.  The tuna, in theory, should be pink in the center, but if you don't like it that way, that's OK.

Serve tuna on top of salsa.  You won't regret it.  This recipe is amazing.

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