Summer is in full swing and we've been craving cooler meals that allow us to keep nutrition and heartiness. This open faced, seared Ahi Tuna sandwich is the perfect meal for lunch or dinner. Since Ahi is a rather nice cut of fish, this filling sandwich also makes for an excellent entree. When it comes to choosing your Ahi steaks, the darker the meat the better. The best quality fillets should be a dark rose or red violet color. Also, your fish should never smell overtly fishy if it is fresh. Tapenade is a surprisingly delicious compliment to the fresh tuna. Try it as either an aoli or as a traditional tapenade by skipping the mayo. Also, don't forget to grab a deliciously crusty fresh bread at your local bakery to complete the total bliss of this dish. For extra freshness, serve with a side of bulgar wheat tabouleh and a fresh glass of Rosé or White Wine.
- Ahi Tuna Steaks (appox 4-6oz each)
- Crusty French Loaf Slices (1 per steak)
- 1 tsp of Black Peppercorns
- 1 tsp of Coriander
- 1 tbsp of Fresh Rosemary
- 1 tsp Pink Peppercorns
- 23 tbsp of Olive Oil or Cooking Oil Spray
- Pinch of Salt *optional
- Remove the tuna steaks from the fridge and leave out until they comes to room temperature.
- Dab fish with olive oil or spray with cooking spray so that the spice rib will stick be able to stick to the fish.
- Prepare the spices and press onto the fish.
- Heat a non-stick fry pan on the stovetop over high heat with 1 tbsp of olive oil.
- Right before the olive oil starts to smoke, place the tuna in the pan. Sear for 2 minutes undisturbed on each side.
- After two minutes, flip the tuna and immediately turn off the heat letting the fish rest for 2-3 mins.
- Let the fish rest for five minutes or more on a plate before slicing. Slice the fish with a chefs knife (non-seraded) in ¼ slices.
- Prep the bread to your choosing and smear with the tapenade aoli. Fan out the tuna slices on top of the bread and serve open faced.
The Tapenade Aoli:
- 1 cup Pitted Kalamata Olives
- 2 tbsp Capers
- 2 medium Cloves of Garlic
- 1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
- 1 tbsp of Kalamata Brine (from the jar)
- 1 tbps of Brandy
- 2 tbsp of Olive Oil
- 1 tbsp of Mayonnaise
- In a food processor, quickly pulse the olives, capers, garlic, mustard, Brandy and brine 3 or 4 times, taking care to retain its chunkiness.
- Add the olive oil and pulse twice more.
- Transfer tapenade to a small bowl and fold in the mayonnaise if desired.
The Bulgar Tabouleh:
- 1 cup of Quick Cook Bulgar Wheat
- Water or Broth as specified on the Bulgar box
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1/2 cup of Kalamata Olives, halved
- 1 whole English Cucumber, seeded lightly peeled
- 1/2 cup Cherry Tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup of Parsley, chopped (double amount for more traditional recipe)
- 1 cup Mint, chopped
- 1/2 Red Onion, chopped
- Zest of 1 Lemon
- Juice of 2 Lemons
- 1/3 cup of Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Prepare the vegetables; chop the parsley, red onion and mint, halve the olives and cherry tomatoes, peel and slice the cucumber, zest and juice the lemons.
- Cook the bulgar as specified on the package and add 1 bay leaf to the pot.
- Once the bulgar is cooked and cooled, transfer to a large bowl and mix in the chopped ingredients.
- Mix the dressing on the side using the lemon juice, zest, olive oil, salt and pepper. Add to the salad and mix well.
- Store in the fridge till you are ready to serve. Can be made in advance.
This recipe has been contributed by Leo Coulourides, our Culinary Specialist.