Do you have a favourite dish that appears on the menu and no matter what other tempting dishes there are you just have to have it? Well sesame seared tuna was that dish for me until I realised how easy it was to make myself.
It takes such little preparation you’ll wonder why you never made it before. Marinated in Asian flavours it is then dipped in sesame seeds and seared for 2 minutes on each side. By searing the tuna it locks in the juices to make it more tender and succulent. The contrast in texture, flavour and taste makes it moist and flavourful like no other fish dish. If tuna is overcooked it becomes flaky and dry which is why searing tuna is so pleasing to the palette.. For this recipe buy nice thick steaks which you cook in one piece and then once cooked you slice it to reveal the pink on the inside.
Tuna is full of healthy macronutrients, omega 3, vitamins and minerals and low in saturated fat. However due to tuna containing higher mercury levels than other fish it is recommended to have no more than 170g per week. Tuna has a low fat content which is why it overcooks very quickly. The best tuna you can find in Spain is from Zahara de los Atunes where the tuna festival celebrates the first taste of the Almadraba tuna. Talented chefs from the restaurants in the area are all in competition to create the best tuna dish for all fish lovers and aficionados to taste. I myself have never tasted anything like it from tuna ribs to tuna tartar. So tender it melts in the mouth.
To prepare sesame seared tuna, buy the freshest tuna steak possible and cook it on the day you buy it. It should be as pinky red as possible before it starts to brown.
Mix all the ingredients for the marinade together in a bowl and add it to a shallow dish. I use Asian flavours like sesame oil, soy sauce and ginger. Grate some lime zest and add to the the dish. Place the tuna steaks in the marinade and coat well. Cover and leave in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours. I make the wasabi avocado dip while the tuna is marinating. It is refreshing and zingy with a spicy kick in the aftertaste. All you need is wasabi paste, 2 ripe avocados, one lime and some greek yogurt. Mash the avocados and add the greek yogurt and mix well. Add a squeeze of lime juice and 1 teaspoon of wasabi and mix well.
When the tuna has been marinating for 2 hours or more mix black and white sesame seeds together. Spread them out on baking paper and place the tuna gently on top, coating it with the sesame seeds. Repeat on the other side until the tuna is well coated.
Heat some rapeseed oil on a griddle pan until piping hot. Place the tuna on top and sear for 1-2 minutes on each side, depending on how pink or rare you like it. For well done tuna cook for no more than 4 minutes. I prefer mine rare as the tuna becomes very dry the longer you cook it. To serve, slice the tuna into thick slices. I make a crunchy asian noodle salad by spiralising carrots, adding cooked noodles and red peppers, sesame seeds and a sweet chilli dressing.
Serve the seared tuna on crunchy lettuce and oriental noodle salad. Dip in the wasabi avocado yogurt dip and your meal is complete!
For an extra dip to add variety to your meal add soy sauce, chillis, sesame oil, grated ginger and sesame seeds to a bowl. Leave to infuse for 30 minutes ..Then dip…..
Serve with slices of avocado.
- 2 large thick chunky fresh tuna steaks
- ¼ cup sesame oil
- ¼ cup light soy sauce or coconut aminos
- 1 lime
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 bunch spring onions
- ½ cup black and white sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons rapeseed oil
- 1 cup greek yogurt
- 2 avocados
- 1 tablespoon wasabi paste
- zest from ½ lime
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- Make the marinade by grating the ginger and mincing the garlic. Add these to a bowl with the soy sauce, sesame oil and the zest and juice from the lime. Mix well.
- Pour the marinade into a shallow dish and add the tuna steaks until well coated. Marinate for a minimum of 2 hours.
- Spread the sesame seeds out on baking paper and place the tuna on top until well coated. Repeat on the other side.
- Heat the oil on a griddle pan until piping hot. Place the tuna steaks on the pan and sear for 1-2 minutes on each side for pink tuna or 4 minutes for well done tuna.
- Slice the tuna into thick pieces and serve on crunchy lettuce and a wasabi dressing on the side.
- To make the wasabi avocado dressing, mash the avocados and add to the greek yogurt, wasabi paste and lime zest. Mix until well combined.
- Tuna cooks very fast and can become dry and flaky very quickly so I recommend searing each side for 1-2 minutes and no longer.