Except for shellfish and calamari, I’m not a fish lover. Nevertheless, we try to have fish twice a week and for that reason, I purchased Fish: Complete Guide to Buying and Cookingby Mark Bittman. It’s given me confidence not only in the kitchen but also at the fish market.

It was a great night for grilling and I can’t think of any fish better for the grill than thick tuna steaks—especially for a meat-lover like myself. I chose Bittman’s “Basic Grilled Tuna,” which calls for a simple marinade that seems to enhance the meaty character of the fish.

For sides, I prepared a simple couscous and roasted cherry tomatoes with olive oil, garlic, and crushed red-pepper flakes.

Basic Grilled Tuna Adapted from Mark Bittman’s Fish.
1/3 cup high quality soy sauce
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 thick yellowfin tuna steaks about 3/4 lbs each
Ground black pepper
Lemon wedges and extra virgin olive oil for finishing.

1. Mix the soy sauce and olive oil.

2. Place the tuna in a square baking dish just large enough to hold the fish and sprinkle with fresh ground black pepper.

3. Cover the fish with the marinade, cover, and let the fish marinate in the fridge for no more than one hour. Marinating for too long a period may overwhelm the subtle flavors of the fish.

Tuna steaks marinating
Tuna steaks marinating

4. Heat a grill pan greased lightly with some olive oil. When hot, grill the tuna on one side for about 5 minutes, basting occasionally.

5. Turn with a fish spatula and continue to cook for about 2 minutes. This timing should yield a steak that’s still somewhat rare in the middle. You can cook longer if you like, testing for your desired level of doneness by lightly prying open the tuna with a thin bladed pairing knife. Avoid overcooking.

6. Place the steaks on warmed plates and finish with a nice drizzle of high quality extra virgin olive oil.

Serve with lemon wedges.

Wine Pairing: Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc


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