Ahi Tuna. You eat it at a sushi bar or at a poke restaurant, but chances are you don’t eat it at home. That’s ok, we get it.
While it may seem intimidating, tuna is actually really easy to work with and very difficult to mess up. The most important step is sourcing a good quality piece of fish. Your local fishmonger should be able to give you all the direction you need on freshness and the sustainability of the fish they have in stock. In preparing the fish, the only real trick to getting a nice, even coating is making sure to pat the fish dry first and properly season it on all sides. Other than that, the sear is simple—just keep an eye on the clock so that each side gets the same amount of time. We love pairing seared tuna with bold Asian flavors, so we’ve loaded up these soba noodles with ginger, garlic and sesame. Substitute any vegetables you have on hand—just cook to tender crisp to give the dish layers of texture.
Soba Noodles with Sesame-Crusted Tuna and Bok Choy
Start to finish: 30 minutes
12 ounces uncooked soba noodles
4 bunches baby bok choy
6 baby bell peppers
4 cloves garlic
2 (1-inch) pieces fresh ginger
6 green onions
6 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
4 4-ounce ahi tuna fillets
6 tbsp black sesame seeds, plus more for garnish
- Fill a large saucepan with salted water and bring to a boil. Add the soba, and cook until tender, about 4 minutes.
- Chop the bok choy crosswise into 1-inch pieces, seed and thinly slice the bell peppers, mince the garlic, finely grate the ginger and cut the green onions thinly on the bias into slices. Reserve some of the green onion slices.
- Drain the soba, and rinse under cold water. Transfer to a large bowl, and toss with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, the soy sauce and the sesame oil. Season with salt.
- In a large nonstick skillet, warm 2 tablespoons vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add bell peppers, and cook until just beginning to soften, about 2 minutes. Add bok choy, and cook until tender-crisp, about 2 minutes. Add ginger, garlic and green onions, and season with salt; cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the vegetables to the noodles, and toss to combine.
- Pat the tuna with paper towels, and season with salt. Coat the tuna on both sides with the sesame seeds. Add the remaining vegetable oil to the skillet and place over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the tuna, and sear for 1 minute per side.
- Divide the noodles between 4 plates and lay the tuna on top. Garnish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds.