An Extremely Beneficial, Simple Gourmet Dinner

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When I say “Simple” dinner, I mean simple and dinner.  When I throw in “extremely” and “beneficial”, then this means something.  Put it all together, and it means “amazing”.  I am going to walk you through this plate.  I did this all on my backyard grill.   You could also do it indoors.

Here is all this takes:

  • an 8 oz piece of fresh ahi tuna ( I live in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  If I can get fresh ahi tuna, you can, too.  Check with your supermarket meat counter.)
  • 1 fresh zucchini
  • 1 fresh tomato

It also takes these secondary ingredients:

  • For the Tuna:
    • Sesame oil (Olive oil is fine)
    • Black Sesame seeds (Check your grocer’s spice rack.  Or, if you have one of those fancy bulk bin aisles, it’s probably there, too.)
    • Chinese 5 Spice (check your grocer’s spice rack)
    • Method: Rinse the tuna and pat it dry.  Pour some oil on the tuna and rub it to coat evenly.  Add 2 Tbs of the Chinese 5 Spice and 2 Tbs of the black sesame seeds on a shallow dish or plate and mix them well, spreading the mixture across the plate surface.  Take the tuna and place it on the spice/seed mixture and coat it well on all sides and surfaces.  Add some seeds if needed, but you should have plenty of 5 spice.  Once coated, set aside while you prepare the rest of the meal.
  • For the Tomato
    • Balsamic vinegar
    • Fresh Basil, preferably (dried basil works, too.  That is what is shown in the photo)
    • Method:  Dice, or slice the tomato.  Drizzle about 1 Tbs of balsamic vinegar on the tomato.  Finely chop a few leaves of fresh basil and sprinkle on the tomato, or sprinkle a teaspoon of dried basil flakes
  • For the zucchini
    • Olive Oil
    • Garlic Salt
    • Method: Rince the zucchini thoroughly and slice it in 1/4″ slices.  For 1 zucchini, add 2 Tbs of olive oil in a ziploc bag.  Also add 2 tsp of garlic salt to the bag and mix it well in the bag.  Drop the zucchini slices in the bag and coat them in the oil/salt mixture.
  • Fire up the grill.  You’ll want it hot, because the idea of searing is that just the surfaces of the meat cook.  Besides, with tuna, if you cook it too long it gets very dry and almost chewy.  Once the grill is hot, add the zucchini pieces to the grill.  When the zucchini has been on the grill for 2 minutes, add the tuna.  After a couple more minutes, begin flipping the zucchini pieces, and flip the tuna.  You will want to sear the tuna no more than a total of 6 minutes, 2 minutes on each large surface and 1 minute each on the sides.  If the zucchini is not golden and tender, remove the tuna from the grill and continue grilling the zucchini.  Slice the tuna in thin strips and top with a drop of hoisin or teriyaki sauce on each piece of tuna if desired.

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