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Seared Japanese Yellowtail with Coriander, Scallions, Kumquats and Ponzu Sauce
Michael Schlow, Radius-Boston, MA
Adapted by StarChefs
Wine suggestion:
St. Supery Sauvignon Blanc 2001

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 (14-ounce) loin of Japanese yellowtail tuna (if yellowtail is unavailable, use bluefin tuna)
  • ½ cup toasted coriander seeds
  • 1-2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Ponzu:
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup light soy sauce
  • 1 ½ teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons lime juice
  • 1 ½ teaspoons chopped ginger
  • ½ teaspoon chopped garlic
  • ½ teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sliced cilantro
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sliced scallion

  • Tartare:
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 2 ounces ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon sliced scallion
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil

  • Garnish:
  • 5-6 kumquats, sliced thin
  • 2 scallions, greens only, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon minced shallots
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • sugar to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons butter

Method:
First, prepare the ponzu. Combine all ingredients in a bowl except the scallions and cilantro, and let sit as long as possible. This will allow the flavors to meld. Before serving the tuna, add the cilantro and scallions to the finished sauce.

Trim the blood line off of the tuna and cut the loins into rectangles 4-5 inches long and 1-2 inches high. Season the top of the loin with salt and pepper and then press toasted and cracked coriander on top, being careful to completely cover one side of the fish.

In a very hot skillet, add one tablespoon of vegetable oil, then sear the fish coriander-side down. When the coriander has turned golden brown, remove the fish from the pan and let it cool at room temperature.

When the fish is no longer warm, invert the loin and cut it in to slices approximately 1/8-inch thick. For uniform slices, it's easiest to cut through the raw part of the fish with a sawing motion, and then push the blade though the seared crust.

With whatever trimmings (however much fish is left after you've squared off the loins) you have, prepare the tartare. Cut the trimmings into a small dice (approximately 1/8-inch thick) and season it with olive oil, lemon juice, chopped ginger, scallions, salt and pepper to taste.

Lay out five or six slices of the seared and sliced tuna in the center of the plate, slightly overlapping, and all facing the same direction. Place a pile of the tartare (approximately 1 teaspoon) at each corner of the plate. Brush the seared slices with finished ponzu and then place a slice of kumquat on each piece of tuna.

To finish the plate, put one tablespoon of sliced scallions for each portion in a very hot pan with a pinch of minced shallots. Season with salt, pepper and sugar, remove from heat and add a dollop of butter, just enough to make the mixture glisten. Spoon a little seared scallions on top of the kumquats and serve immediately.