Seared tuna with parsley pesto

Posted in: DF, LF, S, SF, Uncategorized

Located between the Mediterranean and Atlantic, Tarifa, and indeed the Cadiz coast, is famous for its Atun Almadraba. Fished between April and June using the same method as the Phoenicians and later the Romans, it´s considered respectful of the species. A la plancha (seared), tartare or in a bun (The Reason for Bread), you’d be hard pressed to find a substandard tuna steak here. This recipe was inspired by my favourite Tarifa restaurant Bar El Frances; for me, the herb pesto addition raises the bar on the town´s ubiquitous tuna perfection. I´ve added minutes for a (hopefully) foolproof tuna steak en casa. Vegan’s, veggies, anti-fish people: I keep a jar of the dressing in the fridge to mash into avocado or stir through salad. Trust me.

Tuna-backup-shot

Feeds 2

INGREDIENTS

2 tuna steaks
30g / bunch parsley
30g / bunch basil or your choice
1 tbsp cashew nuts
1 clove garlic
200ml olive oil
Tsp sea or Himalayan pink salt
Tsp grind black pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tsp Kema Kulo or sub for 1/2 green chilli – optional

METHOD

Start by making the dressing. Blitz all ingredients in a Magimix, Vitamix or blender until herbs finely chopped. You’ll need to stop to scrape down the sides midway, potentially more if using anything other than a Magimix.

Parsley-&-coriander-salsa

Transfer to a jar or sealed container and set aside. Make half quantities if you just want enough for the fish; you should still have a little left over.

To make the tuna: set a frying pan to heat on full power. When very hot, add a drizzle of olive oil, followed by the steaks. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

I like mine poco hecho (virtually raw), so 30 seconds on each side is perfect.

Tuna-30secs-each-side

For ‘en su punto’ (‘just right’ a little raw in the centre), fry for 1 min on the first side and 30 secs on the reverse.

Tuna-1min

Well done needs a minute on each side. Any more and it will turn chewy.

Transfer to a plate, drizzle with the pesto and serve with spring´s new potatoes crushed with salt and olive oil, or with salad. Aproveche!

Tuna-bun

For seriously delicious ‘El Frances Montaditos’, sandwich a piece of your tuna in a bun with a slice of tomato, a little lettuce and red onion and un poquito of herb dressing. Incredible.

Tuna-montadito

 

Basil pesto

Posted in: Featured, S, SF, Uncategorized, V, WF

Is there an ingredient which tastes of summer more than basil? Thanks to Mum Garcia’s tireless efforts to appease her offspring, you can store up summer and dollop it on your salad, chicken, salmon or pasta whenever the sun shines. Or doesn’t. I’m pretty confident this is the best pesto recipe I’ve eaten. Ever.

basil-pesto

Ingredients

60g basil leaves
2 cloves garlic, crushed
50g pine nuts
50g parmesan, grated
¼ tsp sea salt
150ml olive oil – increase this if you like a runner pesto or more of a dressing

Method

Blitz all ingredients except the olive oil into a Magimix or food processor for 10 secs.

Scrape down the sides and turn on the machine again, adding the olive oil in a steady stream. Decant to a jar and store in the fridge.

Note: if using a Vitamix or tall blender, add the oil at the beginning. Depending on your blender, you may need to stop to press the ingredients down several times throughout blending. In spite of the hype around new blenders available on the market (which I have), I still find the Magimix hard to beat. Such a shame it doesn’t clean itself.

I always seem to inhale before it goes off but mum has an almost constant supply, keeping in the fridge for a couple of weeks at a time. I make double quantities and store in the freezer. Because I’m lazy.

Top tip: Stir in some olive oil to make a dressing for a simple side salad of spinach, watercress, rocket, tomatoes (sun dried outside of summer) and toasted pine nuts. Great with roast chicken for a picnic.

 

Ricotta, pea & tomato pesto salad

Posted in: LF, S, SF, WF

A super quick (and low in saturated fat, by the way) supper for your salsa.

Ricotta, pea & tomato pesto salad. Wholesome Seduction

Feeds 2

Ingredients

2 handfuls salad leaves: Chard, herbs, spinach & rocket all work
2 tbsp peas. Frozen are fine, just run under tepid water to de-frost
1 tbsp buffalo ricotta, crumbled
1 tbsp tomato salsa (mixed with yoghurt, half and half is good)
1 dsp toasted pine nuts

Method

  1. Dry fry the pine nuts in a frying pan until they begin to brown. Approx. 2 mins, tossing midway.
  2. In a serving dish or on two separate plates, pile the ingredients in the order listed above.

Serve as a side salad or with roast chicken or crusty bread as a light supper.

151 KCALS PROTEIN 6.6g FAT 11.2g SAT FAT 2.4g CARB 6.4g OwS 4.4g SALT 0.1g

 

Herb mayo

Posted in: DF, V, WF

A summer picnic staple. Try tarragon mayo in a bacon, poached egg and salad sandwich – you’ll never look back.

Ingredients

2 egg yolks
handful tarragon, basil or coriander leaves
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
175ml sunflower oil
100ml olive oil
dash white wine or cider vinegar

Method

  1. In a blender or with a stick blender, mix the egg yolks, herbs, mustard, salt & pepper.
  2. Drop by drop add the sunflower oil until the mixture starts to emulsify.
  3. At this point, you can add the remaining oil in a slow, steady trickle, whisking constantly.
  4. Add a dash of vinegar or squeeze of lemon juice to loosen the mixture.

Tip: If you prefer a lighter mayo, add some hot water or use whole eggs, whites included. The latter is also an easier, less ‘curdlesome’ option.