Broiled Sicilian Tuna with Tomato Salsa

Sicilian Tuna with tomato salsa

I am a lover of seafood and fish – almost any and every kind. I’m not a lover of sushi or sashimi, but I will eat it. What turns me off, however, is uncooked tuna.  I know, I know, it’s considered at the top of the list for most people and the rarer the better.

Now, it’s hard for me to find a steak that is too rare (other than raw! I like it ‘black and blue’ as we used to order it in the steakhouses of old – charred black on the outside and a bluish-purple on the inside. Now that’s rare!) But rare tuna just doesn’t do it for me; I want my fish cooked all the way through!

So when I do tuna (or swordfish when I can find it and afford it), I cook it all the way through and enjoy it tremendously. This recipe, however, allows me to cheat a little and I’m not quite so picky about “cooking it all the way”.  Since one of my fave appetizers or light meals is ceviche which isn’t cooked at all (in the usual sense), I consider this recipe a bit like ceviche in that it is marinated in lemon juice which starts the “cooking” process so it doesn’t need as much time under the broiler, but I must admit to leaving it there a bit more than the 2 minutes I tell you about! Mea Culpa – it’s a work in progress for me but I’ll get there!

Yes, for those of you who will only eat tuna out of a can, this can be made with any thick and sturdy fish such as cod or swordfish. It’s tasty – healthy – and easy. If you marinate it on the counter, it’s quick; you can fix a salad and prep some asparagus or spinach or kale to go alongside and dinner’s done in a flash!

Sicilian Tuna with Warm Tomato-Caper Salsa

For tuna:

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 anchovy fillets, finely minced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 wild-caught tuna steaks, 6 oz. each

For sauce:

  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 c diced fresh tomato
  • 1 Tbsp. drained capers, roughly chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste

For the tuna, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, minced anchovies, and oregano. (If you have a mortar and pestle, this is the perfect place to use it to “muddle’ everything together!) Place the tuna in a resealable bag and pour in the marinade mixture. Turn to coat, and seal the bag, pressing out as much air as you can. Marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature, or at least 1 – 1-1/2 hours in the refrigerator.

To make the sauce, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced tomato and capers, and simmer for about five minutes. Stir in the basil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, heat lightly oil (or spritz with cooking spray) a large stainless skillet and place over high heat. Remove the fish from the bag, and shaking off excess marinade, and sear for about 2 minutes per side, until just barely opaque in the center. (Alternatively, grill the fish over high heat.)

Plate the fish and top with the warm sauce.

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