A Recipe from Our Cookbook: Tuna Tartare with Cucumber and Cilantro
Even though it’s absolutely show-stopping, this dish is very simple and easy to prepare. In Welcome to Michael’s, we advise that the cucumber broth that surrounds the tuna can be prepared early in the day and kept in the refrigerator. Michael advises that you let the tuna shine in this dish. Don’t overseason it.
Tuna Tartare with Cucumber and Cilantro
- 3 ounces ice-cold, absolutely fresh sushi-grade tuna, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon toasted Asian-style dark sesame oil, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon wasabi oil (available in Asian markets), or to taste
- Cucumber Broth (recipe follows)
- Approximately 1/2 cup loosely packed kaiware or other fresh sprouts (see Note below)
- Sesame seeds, for garnish
Place the tuna in a medium bowl. Add the chives and carefully season with soy sauce and the oils. You want the seasonings to accent the sweet, oily tuna, not overpower it.
Assemble 4 shallow soup bowls. Place a 2-inch ring mold in the center of one bowl. Fill the ring about 3/4 full with the tuna tartare, patting it down with the back of a spoon to make a neat, even circle. Carefully lift the ring. Continue making circles of tuna tartare in each of the remaining 3 bowls.
Ladle about 1/4 cup of the Cucumber Broth around the tuna and garnish with the sprouts. Lightly sprinkle the tuna circles with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
- 2 hothouse cucumbers, peeled and chopped
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro
- 1 bunch fresh basil
- 1/2 bunch fresh mint
- 2 tablespoons yuzu juice (see Note below)
- 1 tablespoon pickled sushi ginger with its juice, or to taste
Combine the cucumbers, cilantro, basil, mint, and yuzu juice with the ginger and its juice in a blender. Process until very smooth. Do not overprocess, as you want the liquid to be bright green.
Pour the puree though a fine sieve into a clean nonreactive container. Cover and refrigerate for about 1 hour or until well chilled.
NOTE: Kaiware sprouts come from daikon radish seeds. Yuzu is a very tart Japanese citrus fruit. They are both available at Asian markets and some specialty and health food stores. If you can’t find yuzu juice, you can substitute a mixture of equal parts lemon and tangerine juices or just plain lime juice.