Charbroiled White Tuna with Crab Meat and Three-pepper Relish
“White tuna” is a Louisiana euphemism for escolar, a large fish with oily flesh and a delectable flavor that is caught in the Gulf of Mexico. For Bella Luna, chef Horst Pfeiffer buys escolar that range up to twenty-six pounds and prepares the steaks himself.
- Cajun Spices
- Paprika - 1 cup
- Cayenne Pepper - 1/4 cup
- Garlic powder - 1/4 cup
- Onion Powder - 1/4 cup
- Sweet dried basil - 2 tablespoons
- Oregano - 2 tablespoons, dried
- Thyme - 2 tablespoons, dried
- Olive Oil - 1/2 cup
- Escolar - 2-1/2 pounds (alt. salmon steaks)
- Shiitake Mushrooms - 36, stemmed
- Garlic - 1 teaspoon, minced
- Crab Meat and Three-pepper Relish
- Red Bell Pepper - 1, roasted, peeled, seeded, deribbed, and diced
- Yellow Bell Pepper - 1, roasted, peeled, seeded, deribbed, and diced
- Poblano pepper - 1, roasted, peeled, seeded, deribbed, and diced
- Sesame Oil - 1/4 cup
- Soy Sauce - 1/4 cup
- Balsamic Vinegar - 1/4 cup
- Ginger - 2 tablespoons, diced fresh
- Crab Meat - 1 lb, fresh cooked
- Cracked black pepper to taste
- Butter - 2 tablespoons
- Baby Carrots - 36, peeled and blanched
- Cilantro - 2 tablespoons, minced fresh
- Chives - 2 tablespoons minced fresh, plus 1 tablespoon for garnish
- Basil - 2 tablespoons minced fresh for garnish
- Carrot - 2 large
- Canola oil - For frying
To prepare the Cajun spices: Combine all the ingredients in a blender or food processor until mixed. Store in an airtight jar.
Cut the fish into 1/2-inch-thick steaks and place in a shallow non-aluminum container. Mix together 1/4 cup of the olive oil and the Cajun spices. Pour over the fish. In a medium bowl, toss shiitakes with 1/4 cup olive oil and garlic. In another bowl, mix together the sesame oil, soy sauce, vinegar, and ginger and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the peppers and crab meat. Season with cracked black pepper.
Meanwhile, grill the mushrooms and fish over medium coals for 2 to 3 minutes, or until lightly seared. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and saute the blanched carrots for 3 to 4 minutes, until lightly browned. Toss with the cilantro and 2 tablespoons of the chives.
To prepare the carrot garnish: Run the 2 large carrots through a spiral slicer to make very thin spirals. Divide into 4 handfuls. Heat the canola oil to 370 F in a deep fryer or deep saucepan. Gather a handful of carrot spirals and put in the hot oil; flash-fry for 10 to 15 seconds, until crisp, then remove with a wire skimmer or slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels. Repeat to fry all 4 handfuls.
To serve: Place the carrots, mushrooms, and grilled fish on dinner plates. Top with the relish and garnish with fresh chives and basil. Garnish each dish with flash-fried carrot spirals.