Recipe Chef: Traci Des Jardins
Recipe Name: Seared Albacore Tuna Salad with Avocado, Gypsy Peppers, Cherry Tomatoes, Shelling Beans, and Green Olive Vinaigrette
Type of Cuisine: California/French
Food Category: First Course
A fresh and filling salad that is perfect on hot summer nights.
1 pint Butter or Cranberry beans, fresh or high-quality canned
1/2 white onion
1 stalk celery
4 cloves garlic
2 Gypsy or other mild peppers, seeded and cut into rings
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 6 oz albacore tuna steaks
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 large ripe avocado, peeled and cut into chunks
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
3 tablespoons green olives, pitted and halved
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 large lemon
1/2 cup fresh basil, torn by hand
1 cup arugula
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
1. If using fresh beans, remove them from their pods and put them in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, 1/4 cup of the basil, and enough water or chicken stock to cover by one inch. Bring the liquid to a boil, then simmer covered over medium-low heat until the beans are tender, about 30-45 minutes. Season the beans with salt and pepper.
2. Roast the peppers with a little olive oil, salt and pepper until soft and browned.
3. Season the tuna steaks with salt and pepper. In a sauté pan over high heat, add the canola oil and sear the tuna on both sides until browned, yet still very rare inside.
4. In a bowl mix the avocado, tomatoes, olives, peppers, and beans with a little of their cooking juices. Add the olive oil, lemon juice, basil, salt and pepper to taste.
5. Tear or cut the tuna into chunks and mix with the other ingredients and give the salad a little time to marinate.
6. When ready to serve, place 1/4 of the arugula in the center of each plate. Spoon the marinated albacore salad into the center of the bed of arugula.
Villa Sparina Gavi di Gavi (Cortese) Piedmont, Italy 2005