Thursday, July 17, 2014

Sesame Crusted Ahi with Kale and Quinoa

Here's an ahi tuna salad that is an entire meal in itself. The kale and vegetables lend crunch and color, the quinoa adds substance, and the tuna tops it off for a beautiful and tasteful presentation. The tuna is encrusted with sesame seeds and the salad dressing is also sesame based, tying all of the tastes together.


1 cup water
1/2 cup quinoa
2 cups finely chopped dinosaur kale or coarsely chopped baby kale
1/2 cup thinly sliced red pepper strips
1/2 cup diagonally sliced snap peas
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup thinly sliced cucumber
1/4 cup diagonally sliced celery
1 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. finely chopped fresh ginger
1 Ahi tuna steak, about 1/2 pound
1 Tbs. sesame seeds (I used half black seeds and half white seeds)
1 pinch sea salt

3 Tbs. Sesame Seed Salad Dressing, divided


Heat the water in a small saucepan. Rinse the quinoa, then add to the water. Cook according to package directions, usually it simmers, covered, for about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the quinoa sit for an additional 5 minutes.

Mix vegetables together in a large bowl. Add the quinoa. The quinoa will still be hot, and it will turn the kale a brighter green. Toss the mixture with 2 tablespoons of the salad dressing. Divide the vegetables between two serving plates.

Heat the olive oil in a non stick skillet. Pour the sesame seeds onto a flat surface. Press the tuna steak into the sesame seeds, coating each side with seeds. Cook the tuna for about 1 to 1-1/2 minutes per side, searing the steak on the outside, but leaving the inside rare. Sprinkle the salt over the cooked steak. Remove the steak from the skillet and slice, against the grain, into 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices. Place half of the slices on each plate. Pour the last of the salad dressing over the cooked tuna. Serve.

Serves 2, easily doubled.

Stealthy Cooking Tip: Vary the vegetables according to your preferences. Also good would be bean sprouts, canned baby corn, napa cabbage, green onions, tomatoes, zucchini ... the list is as long as your favorite vegetable. Just be sure to have about equal amounts of vegetables with kale. The variety will please your eye and your palate. 

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