A Sarcastic Appetite

Jump-Seared Tuna and Spicy Slaw
July 31, 2009, 6:51 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The other day I stumbled upon this article and was a little taken aback. I have to say, I finished it and found myself in a bit of a conundrum: don’t eat a lot of fish and risk getting dementia, or eat lots of fish and enjoy a nice bout of mercury poisoning? And, also, drink a lot of wine and end up with cirrhosis of the liver anyway?

Oh, is that last one not really related?

I was still thinking about that article as I wandered home from work last night, stopping here and there to shop needlessly fight the recession as any upstanding American would. I also thought it was high time that I attempt to make dinner without really consulting a recipe – a decision that usually has disastrous consequences – but I was pretty sure I could wing it with flying colors this time.

My strategy was simple and left ample time to devote to a bottle of vinho verde I picked up on the way home: Door #1, AKA more fish, less dementia, and served with a side of mercury poisoning. I figured I’d marinate the tuna in a sauce much like the spicy garlic sauce I made for tofu not too long ago, throw together some kind of slaw-like salad with the last sad veggies from my CSA haul, make a sesame-soy dressing, toss some avocados on top….and done.


(Ok, ok, so maybe I make a mess in the kitchen. Whatever.) All I needed was some nice looking sushi-grade yellowfin from one of my favorite places in the world. The slaw was next on the list, and a piece of cake. Thanks, Cuisinart!


So far, the hardest part was opening the bottle of wine…how I kid. (Um, it was a screw top.) All that was left was to heat the pan until it was sizzling hot, then sear the tuna, dice some avocado and toss it in lemon juice, and sprinkle some untoasted (because you know I’m lazy like that) sesame seeds on top. Yeah, it was really good.


Jump-Seared Tuna and Spicy Slaw

Serves 2.

2 half-pound-ish pieces of nice yellowfin tuna (make sure it is sushi-grade)

This spicy garlic sauce, doubled, minus the scallions and sesame seeds, but with the addition of 1 heaping tbsp. of minced fresh ginger

Whatever slaw-like veggies you have; I used 3 carrots, 1/4 head of Napa cabbage, and 1/2 head of a sad little raddichio.

3 scallions, chopped

1 avocado, diced and dressed with fresh lemon juice

This spicy ginger dressing; I added 1 tsp. of red pepper flakes in lieu of the oil, used 2 tbsp. soy sauce instead of 2 tsp., and added lots of freshly ground black pepper.

1 tsp. extra sesame seeds to sprinkle on top should you feel so inclined

Marinate the tuna in the spicy garlic sauce, covered at room temperature for 15-20 minutes. While that’s marinating, shred the carrots, cabbage, and raddichio using the, ahem, shredding blade of your Cuisinart. Don’t have a Cuisinart? Spend the next hour finely julienning your veggies by hand into identical matchstick shapes. Kidding, kidding; if you don’t have any fancy equipment, just chop everything into vaguely the same size. Add the scallions and dress with the sesame soy dressing. Let it sit for a bit at room temperature.

Heat a non-stick pan until it’s really really hot, then sear the tuna for about two minutes a side. Throw it on top of the slaw, add the avocado and the sesame seeds, then dress with some of the leftover marinade.

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