Healthy eaters who eschew, rather than chew, red meat can still have their steak and eat it too as long as it’s tuna steak! Tuna steaks, unlike fillets, are thick, meaty cuts that can be purchased at most groceries and that are broiled, pan-seared, or grilled. There are 1,001 ways to prepare tuna steak; in truth, the cook is only limited by his or her imagination, what’s in the fridge, and how deep his or her pockets are.
Folks with access to the sea might find that cutting their own tuna steaks is a money saver. It’s not hard to do, but anyone lacking a shore within walking distance will no doubt discover that it’s easier to find tuna steaks already cut than it is to find a whole tuna and cut the steaks to save a couple bucks. The most important thing to remember, though, is that tuna steaks that are less than fresh will make inferior, and possibly dangerous, meals.
One of the easiest ways to create a memorable tuna steak dinner begins with steaks that have been broiled in the oven or grilled over apple or cedar wood. Served with slices of avocado, mango salsa, and a lightly dressed salad, the meal is both healthy and satisfying. Cooks who feel guilty unless they chop, pour, and mix things will find these fish steaks are happy to swim in any one of a number of marinades before heading to the grill. Olive oil and fruit-scented vinegar, together with a tablespoon or two (15 to 30 grams) of minced garlic is one way to go. For an Asian flair, orange juice, soy sauce, and sesame oil mixed with minced ginger and garlic will bring diners to their knees in gratitude.
Tuna steaks are both workhorses and superstars. Coating them with crushed, dried herbs such as rosemary, basil, oregano, or a combination, then frying them briefly will result in steaks that can be served as steaks or thinly sliced Carpaccio-style and nestled into a bed of salad greens. Encrusting tuna steak in crushed sesame seeds and ginger before grilling will bring even the shyest mermaid to the table.
Home cooks who don’t live seaside are strongly encouraged to hunt for a fish market where freshness is assured. Shady vendors have been known to retain the deep red sunset hue that bespeaks a tuna’s freshness by exposing the flesh to carbon dioxide. It’s not good for diners, but it does keep the fish’s meat looking good.