When you manage to get your hands on top quality sushi-grade yellow fin tuna, you eat it raw. This dish of tuna tartare with togarashi dressing is adapted from Liam Tomlins book ‘Lessons with Liam’ and it’s delicious. I adapted it mainly to fit in with the quantity of tuna I had, but also to my heat preference levels. Liam’s recipe is a little spicier than I made it, but since tartare is essentially a protein salad so you can just adjust the seasonings in the dressing to your liking. I also made it in a bowl with all the salad things because layering it into a mould in a tian was a little fussy for my lunch.
The fish comes from a local artisan fish retailer in Paarden Eiland called ‘Cape Fish‘. Literally 5 kays outside of the city centre, it’s within easy reach to get your hands on a limited but regular supply of Tuna, swordfish, sea-run trout and mussels. They have a small fish processing facility that supplies local restaurant and retailers so they decided to open a small shop of their own to sell directly to the public. I went on a tour of the place and have never seen a cleaner seafood facility in my life. There is not a single fish smell as every inch is temperature controlled and gets washed down after each process. This tuna was utterly delicious and I can’t wait to try their sea-run trout from an aqua farm in Saldanha Bay.
This dish will make a perfect festive starter as its light and packed with flavour. Its raw, cold and easy to whip up so what else do you want when on holiday?
Recipe serves 2
- 300gms excellent quality tuna cut into thick cubes
- ½ an avocado cut into dice
- ½ Mediterranean cucumber cut into small dice or 10cm of English cucumber (skin on)
- Black and white toasted sesame seeds for garnish
- A few slices of radish (optional)
- Lime wedges
- 1 tsp finely grated ginger
- 1 clove garlic minced
- ½ – 1 red chilli deseeded and finely chopped (depending on how hot you like it)
- 2 tsp (10ml) sesame oil
- 1 Tbs (15ml) peanut oil
- 1 tsp honey
- 2 – 3 tsp soy
- ¼ – tsp chilli powder or togarashi spice blend (adjust to your heat preference)
Cut the tuna into a medium dice, you want it to still maintain its structure.
In a small bowl whisk all the dressing ingredients together and toss the tuna through this to thoroughly coat.
While that is marinating briefly, cut up the avocado, cucumber and come wedges.
Serve this in small dishes starting with avocado on the bottom, followed by the chopped cucumber and then topped with the dressed tuna. Sprinkle on the sesame seeds and add the sliced radish (optional). Serve with extra lime wedges.
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