Ahi Tuna Tower
Charred on the outside, rare inside, tuna slices are used to build a tower that includes onion confit, avocado, and oven-dried tomatoes. Because you will be using the most even slices of tuna, you will have some outside slices left over; save these to go with greens for a salad the next day.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 4 tablespoons
- Plum Tomatoes - 8, peeled, seeded, and halved
- Sea or kosher Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Sushi-grade Ahi - four, 8-ounce pieces
- Scallions - 4, peeled, trimmed, and halved lengthwise
- Onion Confit
- Red Onions - 2 large, sliced very thin
- Soy Sauce - 1/2 cup
- Rice Wine Vinegar - 1/4 cup
- Dark Sesame Oil - 2 tablespoons
- Ponzu Sauce
- Shallots - 2, sliced thin
- Rice wine - 1/4 cup
- Soy Sauce - 1/4 cup
- Olive Oil - 1/4 cup
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Avocados - 2
- Scallions - 2, green parts only, chopped diagonally
To roast the tomatoes: Preheat the oven to 200 F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Place the tomato halves on the sheet and roast for 2 hours. Remove; set aside.
To prepare the tuna: Season the tuna liberally with salt and pepper, pressing it into the tuna. Work with one piece of the tuna at a time. Heat a large skillet or saute pan over high heat, then add one tablespoon of the olive oil. Sear one piece of the tuna for 20 to 30 seconds on each side, leaving the center raw. Add two scallion halves to the pan and saute just until they soften. Remove the tuna and set aside on a plate. Repeat with the remaining tuna, oil, and scallions.
To make the onion confit: Place the red onion, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil in the same pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until most of the moisture has evaporated. Remove from heat and set aside to blend the flavors.
To make the ponzu sauce: In a bowl, combine the shallots, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
To serve: Slice the tuna lengthwise into thin slices; you will use 4 slices per serving. Extra tuna pieces may be wrapped and saved for another use in the refrigerator. Peel and pit the avocado, then slice crosswise into very thin slices, about 1/8-inch thick. Place a piece of tuna in the center of each plate. Fan one fourth of the avocado slices over the top of one tuna slice and place a second piece of tuna on top. Spread onion confit on this layer, then top with another piece of tuna. Cover with oven-dried tomatoes. Top with a final piece of tuna. Cross two cooked scallion halves over the top. Repeat for each serving. Sprinkle chopped scallions over the plates. Drizzle with ponzu sauce.