When visiting the fish counter I always check to see if the Ahi Tuna is on sale. It can get pretty pricey. Tonight, thankfully, not only was the sushi grade tuna on sale, but it was also wild caught, a distinction that is becoming exceedingly important to consider these days. Purchasing wild caught fish is not only better for the environment but it is also healthier for you. It typically comes with a hefty price-tag though, so I was very excited to purchase these filets for $9.99/lb. Rare tuna is delicious but can get a little boring. I have played around with it and really like this light and crunchy crust. It adds a little flavor but still allows the tuna to shine through. The creamy aioli is a tangy finish with a nice hint of heat against the cool Ahi. A refreshing and healthy meal you can feel good about serving – in more ways than one!
To start, make the aioli. The flavors will continue to meld while you cook the rest of the meal. Simply whisk together one half cup mayonnaise, one tbs. low-sodium soy sauce, one tbs. extra virgin olive oil, one tbs. dijon mustard, one clove minced garlic, four or five dashes of hot sauce and a light squeeze of fresh lime juice. Combine until smooth and taste to make sure all of the flavors are balanced. Adjust to your liking.
Pat the tuna steaks dry and set aside on the counter, not back in the fridge. You want to take some of the chill off.
For the crust, combine two palmfuls of panko (Japanese breadcrumbs – super light and airy), one tbs of sesame seeds, one tsp of garlic powder, a pinch of red pepper flakes and a sprinkling of kosher salt. Spread out on a plate.
Gently press the breadcrumb mixture onto either side of the tuna, leaving the sides bare. You will have to use your hands for this in order to make sure the crust is even and spread out. I always end up sprinkling some on top and pressing down.
Heat some olive oil in a saute pan on medium high heat. Once very hot but not smoking (the oil will be forming wide rings), carefully add the tuna to the pan. I have to use my hands for this as it is delicate and the crust will want to fall off. The tuna will only need to cook for one and a half minutes per side, allowing for a nice crust but for the center to remain raw. Be careful when flipping as well – you may have to use your fingers to stabilize the crust as you turn the fish over. Just don’t burn yourself!
Remove the fish and place on a cutting board. Allow to cool for one minute and then slice thinly.
- one half cup mayonnaise
- one tbs low-sodium soy sauce
- one tbs extra virgin olive oil
- one tbs dijon mustard
- one clove minced garlic
- four or five dashes hot sauce
- light squeeze of fresh lime juice
- two filets wild caught ahi tuna, five-six ounces each
- two palmfuls of panko breadcrumbs
- one tbs of sesame seeds
- one tsp of garlic powder
- a pinch of red pepper flakes
- a sprinkling of kosher salt
- one tbs olive oil