Fresh tuna, unlike that which we are accustomed to eating from a can, is delicate in flavor, and meaty. It is not fishy or strong. It’s a real treat to be able to work with ingredients so fresh and amazing. And unlike massive, older tuna, young, small tuna such as this does not pose the same risk in terms of mercury content. They have simply not been around long enough to build up a store of it.
Seared Albacore Tuna Loin with Olive Oil Cherry Tomato Caper Compote
Seared Albacore Tuna Loin 1/12 pounds of tuna loin*
3 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoons mixed sweet cherry tomatoes, halved
1 fresh garlic cloves
1 small shallot, minced
2 teaspoons capers in brine, minced
1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons fresh basil chiffonade, torn or chopped
1. Prepare a medium grill and rub the tuna loin with olive oil. Season the loin liberally with salt and pepper.
2. Grill the loin for approximately 3 minutes per side, over indirect heat, for medium-rare. (Tuna should be seared but left rare in the center, so don’t overcook!)
3. With a very sharp knife, cut the loin in to separate serving sizes.
1. In a saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
2. Saute the shallots for two minutes until translucent. Add the garlic and saute for another minute.
3. Add the wine and capers. Simmer for two minutes and then add the cherry tomatoes and saute gently for another minute. Season with salt and pepper. Allow the tomatoes to warm and soften slightly, stirring gently, being careful not to break them by overcooking.
Sprinkle compote with the basil at the last minute, and serve warm, spooned over the seared tuna. Drizzle with remaining tablespoon of olive oil and serve. Serve over risotto. Serves 4
*If you do not have access to fresh tuna or tuna loins, this recipe would work equally well with fresh halibut, snapper, sea bass, grouper, swordfish, or rock cod, or even salmon. If substituting a different fish, extend the cooking time for an additional minute per side to fully cook, but not overcook the fish.
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