Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Day 18: Chicken of the Sea...Only Better!

"Is this chicken, what I have, or is this fish? I know it's tuna, but it says 'Chicken of the Sea.'" --Jessica Simpson

Even if you didn't watch Jessica Simpson's reality show, Newlyweds, (which I didn't, I swear) I'm pretty sure most people know of "chicken of the sea." However, you can't fault Jessica--why is tuna compared to chicken when one is fish and the latter poultry? Kind of an odd comparison, don't you think? Well, the obvious answer is that it's just the name of a brand of canned tuna. However, I knew there had to be more behind the name, so I went to the ever useful Wikipedia (don't judge--there are some educated people writing those articles on that site) which stated the following explanation from the company's website: 

"In the "old days," fishermen referred to the white albacore tuna as "chicken of the sea." It was called this because the white color and very mild flavor reminded them of chicken."

Huh, I guess I never considered that, although I still don't agree with that statement. It does makes sense, considering they have really cook the 'bejeezus' out of the tuna before they can it so it has this white, dry almost unpalatable texture, unlike the tuna dish I made tonight with a different type than albacore: the scrumptious Ahi tuna. 

Mustard Crusted Ahi Steaks with a Sweet Lime-Tamari Glaze over Wilted Rapini and Sauteed Broccoli Slaw
Makes 2 servings

1- 7-8oz. ahi tuna steak (I got mine frozen from Trader Joe's but it's better when it's fresh)
6 stalks of rapini (also known as broccoli rabe--it looks kind of like a cross between kale and broccoli)
1/2 c. broccoli slaw (I got Trader Joe's organic broccoli slaw, but if you're not lazy like I am, you can just grate the stalks of some broccoli in a food processor until you get a nice slaw)
3 tbsp gluten-free Teriyaki sauce (again, I used San-J brand)
3 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
2-3 tsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp whole grain mustard
3 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp Sriracha sweet chili sauce

1) Defrost tuna steak a medium bowl in the microwave on high for about 3-4 minutes (it should still be slighly frozen afterwards).
2) In a large skillet, heat  2 tbsp sesame oil, EVOO, and 2 tbsp lime juice on medium heat until it starts to boil slightly.
3) Pour in 'juice' from the tuna steak  Rub tuna steak with ginger paste and Sriracha sauce until it's all coated.
4) Lower heat slightly, and cook tuna steak in the skillet for 1-2 minutes on one side and flip it to the other side, cooking it for about 1 minute.
5) Spread the mustard and sesame seeds on top and cover the skillet with a lid, letting it cook for about just 1 more minute. Cut of a small slice and make sure it's slightly rare in the middle (I like my steaks medium-rare, but if you want to cook it longer, it's up to you). 
6) Remove steak from heat and set aside.
7) Pour the remaining tbsp of lime juice, sesame oil and teriyaki sauce. 
8) Sautee the rapini and the broccoli slaw (separately on different sides of the skillet) on medium-high heat and cover with the lid until rapini looks wilted.
9) Place Rapini on one side of the plates and the broccoli slaw next to it on the other side. 
10) Cut tuna steak in half and drape over the broccoli slaw. Serve immediately.

Enjoy and Bon Appetit!

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