Thursday, January 15, 2009

...and now I cook Asian-inspired food, too!

While shopping at Trader Joe's the other day I came across yellowfin tuna (frozen) and picked some up, thinking I'd find a recipe and cook it up. I didn't realize that yellowfin tuna is usually served rare (raw?) with a quick sear on each side. I goggled the hell out of yellowfin tuna, and searched all of my cookbooks, and finally gave in: I was going to have to prepare seared tuna.

Not sure why, but this intimidated me. All (or at least most) seafood preparation intimidates me, in fact. I fear I'll deliver some rare seafoodborne virus to my nearest and dearest.

So, seared tuna it was, and I needed to find a side dish to prepare with it, and I wanted something that wasn't going to be a lot of work, as I was starting this meal late(r) at night, after a long day of work, and didn't need to be spending three hours in the kitchen that particular evening.

Once again, my trusty Gourmet Cookbook
came through for me, with a recipe for jasmine rice with cilantro and peanuts. I found a sesame seared tuna recipe on

First, the sesame seared tuna. I neglected to get the Japanese sweet wine, but didn't miss it at all. This was a lovely sesame encrusted tuna, and it was delectable even prepared with fish that had been frozen. Virtually every seared tuna recipe insisted on the freshed tuna available. I cooked st.'s tuna a bit more than mine, ok, I cooked hers all the way through, since she doesn't eat raw fish, and hers was delicious as well. I will make this again!

The jasmine rice with cilantro and peanuts...oh, wonder of wonders! I used the boxed jasmine rice from Trader Joe's that just cooks in the microwave for a few minutes, then the rice was tossed in a mixture of chopped peanuts, cilantro, rice vinegar, peanut oil, and scallions. My variation: I used half of the called for rice vinegar, and it was just fine. This dish was simple, and the crunch with the peanuts made it terribly satisfying. I would serve this solo to myself. Interestingly, Teena from The Gourmet Project also found it needed less rice vinegar than called for.

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