Seared Ahi Tuna on Arugula

Posted by on October 1, 2011

Sometimes Pizza Fridays needs a bit more than just pizza. Tonight I seared some Ahi tuna before my pesto, buffalo mozzarella and cherry tomato pizza.

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If you can find a great piece of tuna (look for Atlantic Ahi tuna, it’s not horribly overfished like many species out there), this dish is super easy but a huge crowd pleaser. Simply combine equal parts toasted sesame oil and soy sauce, and add a minced clove of garlic, some minced green onion, and grated ginger. Whisk it all together with a drop of dijon mustard (it will emulsify the oil and soy sauce without really changing the flavor). Feel somewhat free to substitute — if you only have powered ginger or raw sesame oil, it will work, since the quality of the fish is the real star. Marinade for at least an hour — a ziplock bag is perfect for getting the marinade in contact with all of the fish.

Now, get a pan screaming hot — crank up the heat as far as it goes. Don’t put any oil on it until the last minute, since there’s going to be a lot of smoke. Use a cast iron pan if you have one, since they’re ideal for the best sear. Right before you add the tuna, add a small amount of cooking oil to the pan. Sear each surface of the fish for about 1 minute (or possibly more if you like a bit more doneness), and then remove from the heat. Take your sharpest knife and slice into quarter inch pieces.

I served it on top of a bed of arugula (my favorite leafy green) lightly dressed with a vinaigrette made of sesame oil, lemon juice, a drop of mustard, and freshly ground pepper.  

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