Pan-Fried Tuna with Salsa Verde
Serves: 4 as a light meal
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 (about 180g each and 2cm-2.5cm-thick) tuna steaks
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, cut into wedges
leafy salad and crusty bread (optional), to serve
2/3 cup loosely packed chopped fresh continental parsley
2 1/2 tablespoons capers, drained
6 anchovies, drained on paper towel
5 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1. To make Salsa Verde, place parsley, capers and anchovies on a clean chopping board, and chop until finely chopped and mixture is well combined. Transfer to a bowl and stir in olive oil and lemon juice. Set aside. Use a pastry brush to brush the oil evenly over both sides of the tuna steaks. Season with salt and pepper. (It is important to season the tuna just before cooking because salt can draw moisture out of the flesh.)
2. Tuna steaks are perfect for pan-frying because when you seal the surface of the steaks in the pan it prevents the tuna drying out. Heat a large heavy-based non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. A heavy-based non-stick frying pan will give the best result as it distributes heat evenly and doesn’t require as much oil for cooking. Add steaks and cook for 1 1/2 – 2 minutes or until they change colour underneath.
3. Turn and cook for a further 1 1/2 – 2 minutes or until tuna changes colour. This will give you a medium-rare piece of tuna. For medium, cook for 2 – 2 1/2 minutes each side. Set aside for 1 – 2 minutes to rest before serving to finish the cooking process. If you like rare tuna, heat the oil in the frying pan (instead of brushing the tuna) over high heat until the oil begins to smoke. Add the tuna and cook for 45 seconds each side or until just seared. Set aside to rest for 1 – 2 minutes before serving.
4. Serve tuna with Salsa Verde and a lemon wedge, and salad and crusty bread if desired.