A healthy, bright and quick dinner. Julienning the veggies transforms them, changing their texture. The peas create a nice crunch- complemented by the sweetness of the fennel and the acidity of the lemon. This recipe was inspired by one of my favorite vegetarian restaurants in Paris- Pousse, Pousse in the 9eme which is owned by Lawrence Aboucaya. Her food was featured on Alain Ducasse's Plaza Athénée Summer Menu.
Makes 3 Servings
1 pound of Ahi Tuna
Pinch of Sea Salt
A small package of Sugar Snap Peas
A head of Fennel
2 handfuls of blanched almonds
2 small yellow summer squash
1 small piece of fresh ginger
1/2 head of garlic finely diced (remove the green inner sprout of the garlic)
2 lemons (1 zested)
2 Tbls Olive Oil
Ginger-Soy-Lime Vinaigrette for marinating the Tuna
2 Tbls finely grated ginger
fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup lime juice
1/3 cup olive oil
In a small bowl combine the finely diced shallot, ginger, pepper, soy sauce and lime juice. Use a hand immersion blender to mix (this is a nice restaurant trick that most restaurants use to get a perfect sauce).
Season the tuna with salt and pepper and let marinate in the sauce for a few minutes
Meanwhile with a sharp large knife get to work with your veggies. Cut the sharp ends off the snap peas and then julienne them into strips that resemble small sticks. Repeat this process with the fennel, almonds and summer squash. Heat a sauce pan over medium heat and toast the almonds for a 2 minutes in a few tbls of olive oil. Add the garlic and cook for a 2-3 minutes. Next add the fennel and cook for 4 minutes or so. Now add the squash and snap peas and cook for a few minutes (not too long as you want the veggies to stay crunchy). Immediately remove from the heat to stop the cooking process. Add salt and a few nice squeezes of a lemon as well as the zest of 1 lemon. Reserve.
Heat the same saute pan over high heat. Add the oil and when its is very hot sear the tuna on all sides, 30 secs per side to 1 minute per side. Add some lime juice to the pan and quickly shake the pan and stir around the pan deposits. Drizzle a bit more of the sauce over the tuna and quickly remove from the pan.
Slice the tuna into 1 inch long pieces and serve on top of the slaw. Voila!