Barefoot Bloggers Challenge – Tuna Salad

May 14th, 2009

I would like to thank Kate of Warm Olives and Cool Cocktails for choosing the first Barefoot Blogger recipe of the month. I mean, I REALLY WANT TO THANK HER. I did not want to do this recipe. Tuna steak is not appealing to me. It is usually served red and rare and I just can’t go there. I thought maybe I would just go with a good quality canned tuna or substitute salmon. Besides I was sure my supermarket would not even have fresh tuna. So I confidently went to the market the other day and guess what! They had wild Sashimi grade tuna steaks ON SALE for $6.98 a pound. I grudgingly bought one steak for my husband’s lunch. He loves fish. I also found wasabi powder which was also called for in the recipe. Wasabi is a green horseradish grown only in Japan and the powder provides a chile -like kick with an herbal overtone according to my google search.

I did make a few adjustments to the recipe. The Barefoot Contessa cooks the tuna steaks for only 1 minute per side and that is just too rare for even my husband’s taste. So I cooked the steak for at least 3 minutes per side. I did not use the amount of salt it called for in the recipe because David is on a salt restricted diet. I was confused by the amount of lime juice specified in the recipe. It calls for 6 tablespoons ( 3 limes ). There is much more juice in 3 limes than 6 tablespoons. I made half of the recipe for the vinaigrette and used 1 lime. I also added 1 tablespoon of sugar to offset the tang of the lime.
The dish was simple to assemble and I tasted it before I called him away from his remodeling projects and it was good. Darn, I should have made more! It was excellent. “Oh yea of little faith”. I should have known that The Barefoot Contessa would not fail me. And that is why I thank Kate for forcing me to make a dish that I would have never attempted otherwise. I am glad I joined the Barefoot Bloggers for that very reason. Take some time to see what the other members are doing with this recipe. I am off the to the store to get more tuna while it is still on sale.

2 pounds very fresh tuna steak, cut 1-inch thick
4 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for brushing
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus extra for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper, plus extra for sprinkling
2 limes, zest grated
1 teaspoon wasabi powder
6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (3 limes)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
10 dashes hot sauce (recommended: Tabasco)
1 to 2 ripe Hass avocados, medium diced
1/4 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
1/4 cup red onion, small diced


Brush the tuna steaks with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the tuna steaks in a very hot saute pan and cook for only 1 minute on each side. Set aside on a platter.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the olive oil, salt, pepper, lime zest, wasabi, lime juice, soy sauce and hot sauce. Add the avocados to the vinaigrette.
Cut the tuna in chunks and place it in a large bowl. Add the scallions and red onion and mix well. Pour the vinaigrette mixture over the tuna and carefully mix.

15 responses to “Barefoot Bloggers Challenge – Tuna Salad”

  1. Natashya says:

    Sounds absolutely delicious! Ina has never let me down either.

  2. Mary says:

    This looks delicious. Ina’s recipes are almost always great. This looks as though it falls into that category.

  3. I’ll be sure to pass this along to my brother. he eats fish several times a week.


  4. Looks wonderful.

    I ended up doing a trackback.

  5. girlichef says:

    I think this sounds so great, but can’t find fresh tuna steaks anywhere in my area, so I didn’t do it 🙁 Hmmmm…I’ll probably be booted (hope not)….but I’m loving everybody else’s!

  6. BMK says:

    I felt the same way about this recipe. I did substitute salmon but still a wonderful dish!

  7. Kanella says:

    I really enjoyed this dish and your version look very good.

  8. This sounds grrrreat. I love tuna sashimi, well-seasoned tuna slapped on a verrrry hot grill just until it’s marked on one side, and then the other, slice it very thin. I make this as a plate, with everything separate. Never thought to combine it all. Wonderful, on my low-carb diet.

  9. Penny your tuna salas looks so wonderful. It looks light and fresh! Did you taste it? If so, how did you like it?

  10. Looks great. I’m not a tuna fan and I did like it. I also cooked my tuna more.

  11. Kate says:

    This is exacdtly the kind of post I was hoping for. THANK YOU!!! As soon as I saw the backtrack feature introduced, I thought “Aww, crud. Many won’t even TRY to adapt this, now… (chicken, tofu, etc)” and I was bummed. Ah well, what are you gonna do? (And in fact, I don’t want to make brownies next week, so I’ll be able to get out of that one myself). Anyway, fortunately, you gave it a try and I’m so glad you did, and that you liked it. Like you, I didn’t want to do it rare — I cooked mine all the way through, too. I like rare tuna, but only when a Chef serves it to me. Anyway, you’ve made my morning and put a big smile on my face.

  12. Debinhawaii says:

    Great job with the salad! It looks wonderful. That is such a great price on sushi grade tuna you can go buy more and do it again!

  13. Peggy says:

    I think your substitutions are excellent. I wish I had left the salt out of mine. And I don’t like rare fish either. And. . if that is really a photo of your personal kitchen up on your blog, I am SO jealous!!!

  14. Great looking tuna salad. What a great sale on the tuna – lucky you. When we lived in the islands our tuna was still dripping with salt water when we brought it in the house and that’s when it’s best eaten raw. BTY, Ina’s never let me down either.

  15. Aggie says:

    So good to hear you liked the salad! It looks and sounds great and I am hoping to make it over the weekend!

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