Sometimes I have an idea for a dish and I just can’t find a recipe for it. So I make something up. And when all the planets align and things go like they should, it turns out just how it was in my head. This is one of those recipes.
I’ve been craving tacos. But not just any tacos. Fresh tuna tacos! Nicely seared with spice and fruit and bright, tropical, summery flavors. I imagined myself lying on a beach somewhere and eating tacos made from all sorts of island goodies.
Alas, I am not on an island, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t just an absolutely wonderful luau happening right in my mouth. This is my favorite recipe I’ve made up this summer (so far!). You can bet your flip flops we’ll be making them again soon!
Spicy Seared Tuna Tacos with Tropical Salsa
2-3 tuna steaks
1 small red chile, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
Drizzle of olive oil
Salt & pepper
1 cup pineapple, diced
1 mango, diced
1 jalapeno, finely chopped (or less if you don’t like it spicy)
1/4 cup cilantro
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 cup chopped napa or savoy cabbage
2 tbsp. mayonnaise or sour cream
Place tuna steaks in a shallow dish. Sprinkle with red chile, garlic, a drizzle of olive oil, juice from 1/2 lime and some salt & pepper. Rub all over both sides. Side aside. Don’t do this ahead of time since the acid in the lime will “cook” the fish if left more than a few minutes.
In a bowl combine pineapple, mango, jalapeno, onion, cilantro and the juice of one lime. Stir to blend and set aside.
In a small bowl combine mayo or sour cream with the juice of half a lime.
Heat skillet over medium high heat. Drizzle with olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. When pan is hot add tuna. Sear 1-2 minutes on each side, leaving it rare in the middle. Remove from heat. Slice against the grain into thin slices.
Warm tortillas in the oven or microwave. Build your taco with a few slices of tuna, topped with salsa and cabbage. Drizzle with a bit of sauce if desired.