My summer mood is on. This week, let me take you to exotic culinary destinations with this sesame crusted Ahi tuna with zoodles (zucchini noodles). It’s fresh, healthy, both sweet and salty, and with a hint of spices!
Together with salmon, tuna has always been among my favorite fish. Already as a little girl, I was never far from my mom when she was cooking tuna, often prepared in a French way (note to self: remember to share the French tuna recipe with you one day). Later on when I was a teenager, I received this French cooking book written by Francoise Bernard (my own Julia Child) and tuna was one of the very first recipes I tried on my own from that book. I was so proud of myself!
With time, my culinary education and my curiosity toward food have evolved, and so have my tuna recipes. As I am a sweet tooth, I naturally enjoy Asian recipes and all kind of fusion food that often have a subtle sweet and salty taste, as now with this sesame crusted tuna. Covered with sesame seeds, the tuna is quickly seared on all sides. Slice the tuna straight away, grab some chopsticks, and dip into a soy ginger lime sauce served in a small bowl.
Rice or any kind of vegetables are the perfect companion to this tuna dish. My choice: make some zoodles (combination between zucchini and noodles)!
I have a zoodle recipe on the blog already (raw courgettes spaghetti bowl), and this is the second one. As my spiralizer let me down recently, I simply used a potato peeler instead. The result is actually even more elegant. The would-be spaghetti now become tagliatelles. Place the zoodles in a shallow dish, with the sesame crusted tuna slices on top, and serve along with the sauce, drizzled both over the zoodles and in a tiny bowl to dip.
- 1 or 2 ahi tuna fillets (5 oz, 150g)
- 8 tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 zucchinis
- 2 tsp minced ginger
- 2 limes (juice, about 6 tbsp)
- 4 tbsp + 2tsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp water
- ½ tsp dried chili flakes
- 2 fresh avocados, sliced
- Sesame seeds
- For the tuna: place sesame seeds on a plate. Pat dry the tuna fillets with a paper towel to remove excess water. Dredge and press tuna into the sesame seeds, coating the tuna evenly. Sprinkle with more seeds as needed.
- In a medium frying pan over medium-low heat, warm the oil until just smoking. Place the entire tuna fillet(s) in the pan and cook on all sides until the sesame seeds start to turn golden underneath (about 1 minute per side). Sear the edges of tuna for 15 seconds on each edge.
- Transfer the tuna into a plate with paper towel, patting to soak gently up any excess oil. Slice the fillet into ½ inch slices.
- For the zoodles: rinse and cut the zucchini in half, lengthwise. Scrape the inside of each half to remove the seeds. Using a spiralizer or a potato peeler, shear the zucchini into long noodles or ribbons.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the zoodles to the skillet and sauté for 3-4 minutes until they are slightly softened (you can skip this step altogether and serve the zoodles raw as well).
- For the sauce: whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Drain the zucchini before tossing with the remaining marinade, and serve with the tuna. Add some avocado, and sprinkle some sesame seeds over, and a tiny bowl with the remaining sauce to dip.