As I’ve read through the blogs of some of my fellow Wednesday-Whiskers, I’ve noticed several of them also participate in Tuesdays with Dorie (Greenspan) and Fridays with (Tyler) Florence. I simply cannot bake yummy goodies every week. There are only 2 of us. Neither of us need full recipes of yummies tempting us, so that’s out…but I sure do love to read the posts! Once in awhile, I’ll add one of her desserts to the week, but…I just can’t do it every week. And now, I’ve noticed Tyler Fridays…oh my. A little less formal…darn tasty looking Friday foods… The only problem was that I’m totally out of the Tyler Florence loop. I know he’s part of the FN group, but I’ve never seen his show and never read one of his cookbooks…hadn’t even thumbed through one… Still, the ladies were happy with their fabulous looking dishes, so…why not? I ordered a book. You know that song…. “Just one look….” That was it. A few pages in, and I was totally smitten and ready to COOK!!
I’ve also been trying to get my act together to participate in The Leftover Queen’s Royal Foodie Joust. I like the idea of working with a set group of ingredients as a challenge. I wanted to participate in Paper Chef too…but calves liver isn’t going to happen in my world. I was extremely excited to see the ingredients for the March 1st Joust… Satsumas, shallots and edible flowers. Interesting…that leaves the protein out there and up to one’s imagination! Yes!!
So…this is a double post. It’s my first Foodie Joust and my first Tyler Florence Friday post at the same time. However…I didn’t follow Tyler’s recipe completely. I subbed out a couple minor characters and added a couple to suit myself. The end result, however, came out fabulously.
Our cast of characters:
Fresh satsumas…which are grown here. Those mandarin orange segments were hand-peeled, and while it was time consuming and a little messy, it went a lot easier than I expected. A pair of either cuticle scissors or embroidery scissors would have made the task a little neater. I cut along the core edge of the segment (of the already peeled mandarin) and peeled back the membrane. The membrane pulled off the outer (peel) edge much easier than I anticipated. That little task wasn’t half bad! The shallot is obvious…I sliced it into very thin rings to garnish the salad, and minced about a teaspoon for the vinaigrette. The edible flowers I chose are fresh rosemary blossoms. They had a lovely lavendar color to go with the light purple of the shallots. The flavor of the rosemary came through as another layer of flavor in this dish.
Seared Tuna with Chinese Salad and Ginger-Soy Viniagrette
3 T low sodium soy sauce
Juice of 1 lime (I used juice of 1 mandarin)
Splash of rice vinegar
2 t fresh grated ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced (my addition)
1 t shallot, minced (my addition)
4 t Chinese Mustard (I used 1 T honey
1/3 c canola oil
1 T sesame oil (I used toasted sesame oil)
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 head Chinese cabbage (I used napa)
1 bunch watercress, torn (I omitted)
1/4 c chopped cilantro
1 hothouse cucumber, thinly sliced (I only used half of one)
2 green onions, sliced diagonally (I used 1, and half a large shallot, thinly sliced and separated into rings)
2 radishes, thinly sliced (oops…forgot those!)
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1/4 c radish sprouts (I used 1/2 cup mixed tiny sprouts that included radish and broccoli-sprouted at home)
1/4 c slivered almonds, toasted
1/2 c mandarin orange segments, drained (used fresh, no draining)
1/4 c rosemary blossoms (my addition)
2 sushi quality ahi steaks (6-8 oz.) (I only used 1)
2 T sesame oil
Sea salt and white pepper to taste
1/2 c sesame seeds
1 T canola oil
Here’s the end result, plated…
We truly enjoyed this meal. It was a great Friday night, dinner for 2 salad. We hate to rush Friday evenings, but…we don’t care to eat anything heavy late in the evening either. This was a perfect way to end the week. We had the lovely ahi steak, quickly seared, just enough to form a sesame crust, and loads of flavorful crunch in the salad. The mandarin was a fabulous touch. It worked well in the dressing as well. The shallot provided the same slightly warm crunchiness that radishes would have. I wondered if the rosemary was going to overpower the other flavors, but the blossoms didn’t carry quite as much punch as leaves do, and they blended in exceptionally with the cilantro and sesame flavors. I’d do this again in a heart-beat! Next time I think I’d like to add some white wines to see what goes well with this. My first instinct is to pair it with a Reisling. But then…sake comes to mind. Hmmm…what about a Chardonnay? Too buttery? We’ll have to see next time!