Yes, we’ve been cooking.  And eating.  Between holidays, sick relatives, and a couple of websites that needed a lot of attention, I haven’t really made the time to add the latest gastronomical delights.

So here’s few…

Tonight was tuna steak.  Gourmet Magazine called this “Sicilian Tuna.”  I call it really good!

It was fun.  I dirtied three pots and grilled outside. (In the 95° muggy heat.)

Sicilian Tuna

ingredients

For tuna:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped oregano
  • 4 (6-ounces) tuna steaks, preferably albacore (1 inch thick; see cooks’ note, below)

For sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch dice, plus 3 tablespoons celery leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup Kalamata or other brine-cured black olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons small capers, drained and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped basil
  • 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

preparation

Marinate tuna:

Combine oil, lemon juice, anchovies, garlic, oregano, and tuna in a large sealable bag and seal bag, pressing out excess air. Let stand at room temperature, turning occasionally, 30 minutes.

Grill tuna:

Remove tuna from marinade and shake off any excess. Lightly oil grill pan and heat over medium-high heat until smoking. Grill tuna, turning once, until pale pink in center, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm.

Meanwhile, make sauce:

Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add diced celery and cook, stirring, until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, olives, and capers and cook until sauce is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in basil, lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper and remove from heat. Spoon sauce over tuna and sprinkle with celery leaves.

This worked on every level.  The tuna marinade was excellent.  The saltiness of the anchovies and the tanginess of the lemon really worked well.  And the tomato sauce…  It was like a bruschetta topping.  In fact, it really would make a great bruschetta.  I will have to remember this one!  I love capers.

Last night was Grilled Pork Chops.  And Watermelon Salad.

Sesame Pork Chops

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp mirin
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil

Mince garlic. Add all ingredients to saucepan and bring to boil.  Simmer about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and chill completely.

Marinate chops about 30 minutes. Remove chops and reserve marinade.  Grill chops to desired doneness.

Pour marinade into a small saucepan and simmer 5 minutes. Spoon over cooked chops.

These were really simple to do and really tasty.  If you want a bit of heat, add some sambal oelek (chili paste.)

And then we had watermelon salad to top it off.  Not exactly an Asian-inspired side dish, but it was  the perfect accompaniment.  Traditionally, it is cubed watermelon, sliced red onion, mint, feta cheese, a splash of vinegar and a drizzle of olive oil.  I used Victor’s homemade ricotta for the feta.  It was good.

Monday for a holiday luncheon we had burgers, baked beans, and potato salad.

The beans and salad came out of a carton.

It was a holiday.

And we had desserts…

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