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4 posts tagged tuna

Dinner tonight: Seared tuna Niçoise

Recipe credit to Nick, who’s gone through a huge amount of trial and error to settle on this recipe.

I put 4 TBsp of olive oil and 4 TBsp of cider vinegar in a small food processor and blended to a smooth emulsion. Added half a shallot, 2 tsp capers, 2 cloves of garlic, and 2 anchovy fillets (all finely diced), blended again (briefly) to make the sauce. I set that aside to infuse.

Next I boiled some eggs (you can do hard or soft to your preference); those were peeled and quartered. I roughly chopped some olives.

I boiled potatoes (I used 300 g), then at the end of cooking added the fine green beans (I used 200 g). Finally, as I plated the salad (layering beans, potato, olives, and dressing), I briefly seared the tuna.

Pretty easy and very delicious indeed. Definitely going to be making this again soon.

Dinner tonight: Seared tuna Ni├žoise

Recipe credit to Nick, who’s gone through a huge amount of trial and error to settle on this recipe.

I put 4 TBsp of olive oil and 4 TBsp of cider vinegar in a small food processor and blended to a smooth emulsion. Added half a shallot, 2 tsp capers, 2 cloves of garlic, and 2 anchovy fillets (all finely diced), blended again (briefly) to make the sauce. I set that aside to infuse.

Next I boiled some eggs (you can do hard or soft to your preference); those were peeled and quartered. I roughly chopped some olives.

I boiled potatoes (I used 300 g), then at the end of cooking added the fine green beans (I used 200 g). Finally, as I plated the salad (layering beans, potato, olives, and dressing), I briefly seared the tuna.

Pretty easy and very delicious indeed. Definitely going to be making this again soon.

Blackened seared tuna with cajun rice

This was our dinner tonight. Despite seeming very fancy, it took less than 20 minutes of prep time and only about 45 minutes to cook from beginning to end. I’d say this is pretty good cooking-to-impress food — although it does fill your kitchen with an alarming amount of smoke.

I’ve written up my recipe for O:S! previously. This one came out a lot prettier than the one I pictured there, though. —Rich

Blackened seared tuna with cajun rice

This was our dinner tonight. Despite seeming very fancy, it took less than 20 minutes of prep time and only about 45 minutes to cook from beginning to end. I’d say this is pretty good cooking-to-impress food — although it does fill your kitchen with an alarming amount of smoke.

I’ve written up my recipe for O:S! previously. This one came out a lot prettier than the one I pictured there, though. —Rich

Blackened tuna steak with dirty Cajun rice

Dinner tonight was partly down to me fancying some Cajun flavours and partly because I wanted to use my new cast-iron grillet pan. Recipe based on Antony Worrall Thompson’s but with some modest modifications. This serves four, more or less (you might want to make a little extra rice).

Cajun dirty rice

I’m calling this “dirty rice” because the original recipe did, but as it omits the crucial chicken liver and giblets it isn’t, really.

First, make the spice mix. Combine these ingredients in a small bowl: (Update: following more experimentation, I’ve changed this spice mix around. See below for details.)

3/4 tsp white pepper
1 tsp salt
1.5 tsp black pepper
1.25 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano


Second, prep the vegetables. Finely dice one green pepper, one onion, one stalk of celery, and three cloves of garlic and set aside.

Third, wash and devein 180 g (6oz) of uncooked prawns (shrimp).

Now it’s time to cook. Melt 2 Tbsp butter in a wide heavy-bottom frying pan that you have a lid for. Add a splash of oil to stop the butter burning, then add the prawns and 2 bay leaves. Cook for three minutes over a high heat, stirring occasionally.

Add the vegetables and the spice mix and stir thoroughly, scraping the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat and cook for eight minutes, (again) stirring occasionally.

Add 500 ml (1 US pint) of vegetable stock and stir thoroughly to scrape up anything glued to the bottom. Cook on a very low simmer for another 8-10 minutes. Stir it once or twice to make sure it doesn’t stick.

Add 150 g (5.5 oz) of rice (pre-soaked first if necessary, depending on what sort of rice you are using). Stir thoroughly, then place the lid on the pan — if it’s not tight-fitting wrap it in foil. Set the heat to the lowest you can and leave for about fifteen minutes while you do the tuna. The exact timing can be tricky here and you might need to adjust based on the sizes of your pan and your hob/burner. You’re aiming to catch it just as the last of the water as it’s absorbed into the rice, and the rice should be fluffy without being glutenous.

Blackened tuna

First, set a cast-iron skillet or grill pan over the absolute highest heat you can manage for at least ten minutes. You need this pan as hot as possible. While it’s heating, make up the spice mix:

1 Tbsp paprika 
1 tsp salt
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder 
1 tsp cayenne powder 
3/4 tsp finely ground black pepper 
3/4 tsp finely ground white pepper 
1/2 tsp dried thyme 
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Second. Get your tuna steaks — four of them weighing about 140g / 5 oz each and around an inch thick. Wash them and pat them dry thoroughly with kitchen towel. As an alternative to tuna, any sturdy, meaty fish will do — red snapper is traditional but you can use redfish or gilt head bream. I’ve seen people cook cod this way although I worried it might fall apart.

Third, melt about 200g (7 oz) of butter in a small pan or (carefully) in the microwave. Pour most of it into a small shallow tray. One by one, dip the tuna steaks into the butter to thoroughly coat them, then sprinkle the spice mix liberally all over the surface of the meat and gently rub the mix in with your fingertips.



Once you’ve done all the steaks, place them into the pan (carefully, so as to not burn your fingers!) and pour a teaspoonful of the remaining melted butter over the top surface (again, carefully — it might flare up). Give them two minutes, flip them over and pour another spoonful of butter over the top. Another two minutes and they’re done.



Enough, eat already!

Updated spice mix for the rice

The mix above was just too peppery for Danielle to enjoy, and truth be told although I liked it, I found it a bit overwhelming too. Following several attempts, I’m currently working on the following mix (for 150 g / 5.5 oz of rice):

1/4 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp thyme
1 tsp paprika
I use Marigold brand swiss vegetable powder, which is rather less salty than some premade stock. The salt level will need tweaking based on the stock you use.

Blackened tuna steak with dirty Cajun rice

Dinner tonight was partly down to me fancying some Cajun flavours and partly because I wanted to use my new cast-iron grillet pan. Recipe based on Antony Worrall Thompson’s but with some modest modifications. This serves four, more or less (you might want to make a little extra rice).

Cajun dirty rice

I’m calling this “dirty rice” because the original recipe did, but as it omits the crucial chicken liver and giblets it isn’t, really.

First, make the spice mix. Combine these ingredients in a small bowl: (Update: following more experimentation, I’ve changed this spice mix around. See below for details.)

  • 3/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp black pepper
  • 1.25 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano

Second, prep the vegetables. Finely dice one green pepper, one onion, one stalk of celery, and three cloves of garlic and set aside.

Third, wash and devein 180 g (6oz) of uncooked prawns (shrimp).

Now it’s time to cook. Melt 2 Tbsp butter in a wide heavy-bottom frying pan that you have a lid for. Add a splash of oil to stop the butter burning, then add the prawns and 2 bay leaves. Cook for three minutes over a high heat, stirring occasionally.

Add the vegetables and the spice mix and stir thoroughly, scraping the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat and cook for eight minutes, (again) stirring occasionally.

Add 500 ml (1 US pint) of vegetable stock and stir thoroughly to scrape up anything glued to the bottom. Cook on a very low simmer for another 8-10 minutes. Stir it once or twice to make sure it doesn’t stick.

Add 150 g (5.5 oz) of rice (pre-soaked first if necessary, depending on what sort of rice you are using). Stir thoroughly, then place the lid on the pan — if it’s not tight-fitting wrap it in foil. Set the heat to the lowest you can and leave for about fifteen minutes while you do the tuna. The exact timing can be tricky here and you might need to adjust based on the sizes of your pan and your hob/burner. You’re aiming to catch it just as the last of the water as it’s absorbed into the rice, and the rice should be fluffy without being glutenous.

Blackened tuna

First, set a cast-iron skillet or grill pan over the absolute highest heat you can manage for at least ten minutes. You need this pan as hot as possible. While it’s heating, make up the spice mix:

  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne powder
  • 3/4 tsp finely ground black pepper
  • 3/4 tsp finely ground white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano

Second. Get your tuna steaks — four of them weighing about 140g / 5 oz each and around an inch thick. Wash them and pat them dry thoroughly with kitchen towel. As an alternative to tuna, any sturdy, meaty fish will do — red snapper is traditional but you can use redfish or gilt head bream. I’ve seen people cook cod this way although I worried it might fall apart.

Third, melt about 200g (7 oz) of butter in a small pan or (carefully) in the microwave. Pour most of it into a small shallow tray. One by one, dip the tuna steaks into the butter to thoroughly coat them, then sprinkle the spice mix liberally all over the surface of the meat and gently rub the mix in with your fingertips.

Once you’ve done all the steaks, place them into the pan (carefully, so as to not burn your fingers!) and pour a teaspoonful of the remaining melted butter over the top surface (again, carefully — it might flare up). Give them two minutes, flip them over and pour another spoonful of butter over the top. Another two minutes and they’re done.

Enough, eat already!

Updated spice mix for the rice

The mix above was just too peppery for Danielle to enjoy, and truth be told although I liked it, I found it a bit overwhelming too. Following several attempts, I’m currently working on the following mix (for 150 g / 5.5 oz of rice):

  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp paprika

I use Marigold brand swiss vegetable powder, which is rather less salty than some premade stock. The salt level will need tweaking based on the stock you use.

Seared tuna steak with salsa verde and steamed vegetables

Inspired by a combination of spotting some tasty looking prime tuna steaks in my local Sainsbury’s and buying a new cast iron griddle that I wanted to try out, I decided to try my hand at seared tuna on Saturday, a dish I’d never made before. It came out tasting good and looking oh-so-pretty thanks to the griddle pan, although I think it would have benefitted from a marginally shorter cooking time at a marginally greater heat.

Recipe from the BBC; I made this one by-the-book. Salsa verde is something I don’t normally care for much but it’s a great pairing with the meaty fish and well worth the moderate effort to chop all those herbs. Oh, one small note to myself for next time — when adding oil to the salsa, remember it’s going to have lemon juice added too so leave it a little thicker than you want it to end up. I overlooked this, so by the time the juice went it the salsa was thinner than I wanted it to be (you can see it’s running down the side of the tuna in my hastily snapped picture!)

I served it with extremely simple steamed vegetables; Jersey Royal new potatoes and runner beans, which are similar to American green beans in flavour but a different shape. For whatever crazy reason I wasn’t drinking that day, but a dry white wine with citrus notes would also go well with this.

Seared tuna steak with salsa verde and steamed vegetables

Inspired by a combination of spotting some tasty looking prime tuna steaks in my local Sainsbury’s and buying a new cast iron griddle that I wanted to try out, I decided to try my hand at seared tuna on Saturday, a dish I’d never made before. It came out tasting good and looking oh-so-pretty thanks to the griddle pan, although I think it would have benefitted from a marginally shorter cooking time at a marginally greater heat.

Recipe from the BBC; I made this one by-the-book. Salsa verde is something I don’t normally care for much but it’s a great pairing with the meaty fish and well worth the moderate effort to chop all those herbs. Oh, one small note to myself for next time — when adding oil to the salsa, remember it’s going to have lemon juice added too so leave it a little thicker than you want it to end up. I overlooked this, so by the time the juice went it the salsa was thinner than I wanted it to be (you can see it’s running down the side of the tuna in my hastily snapped picture!)

I served it with extremely simple steamed vegetables; Jersey Royal new potatoes and runner beans, which are similar to American green beans in flavour but a different shape. For whatever crazy reason I wasn’t drinking that day, but a dry white wine with citrus notes would also go well with this.