Thursday, November 25, 2010

Cajun Blackened Ahi Tuna Sliders

Recipe:  Split some slider rolls in half and brush them with garlic butter.  Grill the rolls on a pan over medium heat till they are toasted golden brown. 
     Set a cucumber slice and some alfalfa sprouts on the bottom half of each of the slider rolls. 
     Cajun Blackening Spice Mix Recipe:  Mix 2 parts onion powder, 2 parts garlic powder, 4 parts paprika, 4 parts cayenne pepper, 1 part black pepper, 1/2 part white pepper, 1 part sea salt, a dash of sugar and a dash of flour.  The tiny amount of sugar helps to caramelize the highlights of the grain of the fish meat.  The small dash of flour helps the spice mix to stick to the fish.  This is a basic cajun blackening mix.  Some chefs add many dried herbs to the mix but it is not necessary.  Originally in Louisiana, blackening was done by pressing rock salt and coarse black pepper onto the fish with no extra seasonings.
     Sliders:  Cut a thick yellowfin tuna steak into 3 pieces that will fit on the slider rolls. 
     Heat some butter in a cast iron skillet or in a saute pan over medium high heat till the butter just starts to smoke. 
     Dredge the tuna pieces in the Cajun blackening mix and immediately set them in the smoking hot butter. 
     Blacken each side of the fish for a little more than a minute.  (Tuna cooks very quickly and you want the tuna sliders to be cooked no more than medium rare.)  Only flip them once. 
     Set the blackened tuna pieces on each of the slider roll bottoms on top of the sprouts and cucumber slices. 
     Place the sliders on a plate and canter the slider roll tops against the tuna. 
     Garnish the plate with some kimchi and lettuce leaf. 
     The yellowfin tuna should be rare to raw in the middle for the best flavor.  Most fish are blackened 6 minutes on one side and 1 minute on the other side, but tuna is treated differently.  Fully cooked tuna is dry and tough.  Rare to medium rare tuna is perfect!  
     This is some spicy food!  I had a craving for Kimchi so I put some on the plate but a Cajun Green Potato Salad would have been nice too.  Green potato salad is green colored from fine chopped green onions.  I'll make that recipe sometime soon.  I have blackened tons of seafood in my life time.  My favorite will always be fresh caught, blackened redfish.  Sadly, the Gulf of Mexico oil spill may cause the extinction of that gulf fish.  This is the Cajun slider that will set you on fire!  ...  Shawna

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