I had to come up with something that went well with red wine. This dish was the result. I was inspired by this picture in one of the food blogs I follow. This dish is grilled asparagus, poached egg with grated Pecorino Romano and botargo. Since I did not have botargo or karasumi からすみ, I omitted it and used grated Parmigiano-Reggiano instead of Pecorino Romano. Seared zuke tuna is my addition. I poached the eggs as I posted before.
Since I prepared green asparagus that morning, this was an easy dish to put together once I decided what I would make.
- I thawed the frozen block of tuna overnight in the refrigerator. I sliced half of the block into half inch thick slices.
- This time I made "Goma-dare" for marinade. I first dry roasted white sesame seeds in a dry frying pan (1 tsp) until slightly darkened and fragrant (the sesame was already roasted but re-roasting it add much more flavor). I ground the seeds in a Japanese Suribachi すり鉢 mortar. I then added mirin, sake and soy sauce in a ratio of 1:1:2.
- I placed the tuna and the marinade in a Ziploc bag to make sure all the surface of the tuna was covered with marinade and removed as much air from the bag as I could. I sealed the bag and kept it in the refrigerator overnight.
- The next evening, I took out the tuna slices, blotted the excess marinade from the surface (picture below) and cut one slice into two.
I thought searing one of the surfaces would add texture and a beef-like flavor which would go better with red wine. I seared the pieces two ways; one by using a kitchen blow torch (those are the ones with the black specs in the picture below) and the other seared in a frying pan with melted butter (the shiny ones on the tops row and right of bottom row).
I got thick spears of green asparagus from our grocery store. I removed the bottom by simply bending and breaking it. Using a vegetable peeler, I peeled the bottom half of the skin and blanched the stalk in salted water. Just before assembling this dish, I quickly sautéed it in melted butter and seasoned with salt and black pepper.
I cut the asparagus on the bias into 3-4 pieces. I arranged the pieces to look like a whole uncut asparagus spear, resting diagonally on a square plate. I arranged the two kinds of seared tuna squares on one side of the asparagus and placed a poached egg on the other side. I grated Parmisiano-Reggiano on top.
This dish followed my octopus carpaccio and we enjoyed it with a glass of Louse M. Martini Napa Cab as before. The tuna was seasoned well from the marinade and became firmer than non-marinated tuna. Searing added beef like flavor but we could not tell the differences between torched vs. pan seared. The combination of runny warm yolk and asparagus cannot go wrong. This dish really went well with the California Cab we were having.