Thursday, June 20, 2013

Black Sesame Tuna over Grilled Vegetable Salad

On a hot summer weeknight, you want something easy.  You also want something that won't weigh you down once you decide to hit the sack. 

I love grilling up big bowls of fresh vegetables on the outdoor or indoor grill (on stormy nights) in the summer.  Now, my veggie salad recipe is going to be a bit - eclectic - tonight; meaning you can really do anything you want and this will work.   I'm going to give you suggestions on the seasonings which will pair nicely with the tuna.  From there, you are on your own.

I also recommend this dish or an indoor grill or grill pan so that the sesame seeds stay on the tuna.  If you must drill this outside, do it on a fish pan or tin foil. 

So, here you go:


For each serving, you will need:

For the Grilled Vegetable Salad:

I used the following, but pick any veggies you like:

Sliced yellow squash
Vidalia onion
Banana pepper
green beans
baby carrots, halved
Fresh tomato, halved

Marinate in:

1 tbs. soy sauce
2 tbs. canola oil
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
Paprika; optional and to taste

For the Tuna:

1 wild caught tuna steak, about six ounces
1/2 tbs. canola oil
1/2 tsp. Wasabi paste
1/2 tbs. black sesame seeds

Cooking spray for grill
Fresh chopped herbs (basil, mint, parsley, etc).
Chili oil
Soy Sauce for passing at the table


Spray grill pan with cooking spray.

Preheat grill pan to medium-high.

Combine all ingredients for the grilled veggies with the marinade.  Marinate for about 20 minutes at room temperature.  Add to hot grill pan.

Note:  Suggest adding vegetables that take longer to grill first; tomatoes last.  Grill until you get the desired amount of "done-ness."  (Is  done-ness a word?)

Now, for the tuna:

While the veggies are grilling, rub the tuna on both sides with the oil.  Dredge in the Wasabi powder and then the sesame seeds. 

Grill tuna for about three or four minutes each side for rare to medium rare.  Adjust cooking time accordingly for desired temperature. 

Top with fresh chopped herbs.  Drizzle with chili oil and pass soy sauce at the table.

See you soon!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Easy Like Sunday Morning; Garden Hash

Some of the best dishes come about with little fuss and when you encounter the dreaded, "Oh, no, we are out of..." 

Well, that's what happened this morning.  I had already started the potatoes for breakfast when I realized I had used up all the eggs the other morning when when we were getting ready to visit EPCOT with family.  My father-in-law had free tickets and he treated us to the fun-filled day.  But you know how it is when you are cooking breakfast, trying to get ready and clean the kitchen at the same time.  I barely even recall eating, let alone remembering how many eggs we used. 

So this morning when I went to reach for the eggs, there were none.  But knowing we are going to be eating lunch in a few hours after swimming, we decided to opt for something light.  My husband suggested that I turn these wonderful potatoes into a garden hash. 

Here is a quick recipe that you can enjoy on an "easy" Sunday morning.  You can start with the packaged potatoes that you find in the refrigerated section of your grocery store as they take less time to cook.

Serves 2.


1 tbs. Canola oil
10 ounces home style potato slices (store-bought)
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 tbs. butter
2 medium banana peppers, sliced and seeded
1/8 cup sliced sweet onion
1/8 cup diced tomato
1/2 tsp. dried thyme

Suggested:  Green or red pepper sauce for passing at the table


Add canola oil to a heavy or cast iron skillet.  Heat over medium-high heat.  Add the sliced potatoes.  Sprinkle the seasoned salt and ground pepper over the top side.  Flip once potatoes are browned to your liking.

TIP:  We like some crunchy parts when we make fried potatoes, so I flip some of the potatoes sooner so that they don't all turn out charred.  Probably not a chef's technique -  most flip them all at the same time - but we like it that way.  You can adjust the cooking  time for the way you like your potatoes. 

Once the potatoes are flipped, cook for about another two minutes. Add in the butter, the banana peppers, onion and tomato.   Add in the dried thyme.  Continue to cook just until the butter is melted and the vegetables are still crisp and firm to the bite. 

Serve with green or red pepper sauce. 

It's that easy. 

See you soon!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Warm Grilled Vegetable Salad with Goat Cheese

Featured with grilled Scallops and Shrimp Skewer
topped with
Lemon and Almond Butter

Before I begin today’s healthy food post, I want you to know that we have a winner in the give-away;  a one-year free subscription to Cooking Contest Central.*  The winner is Betsy Bridge.    I know she will put the subscription to good use as her two daughters are now starting to enter cooking contests.  Congratualtions, Betsy!
Next time I try the shark steaks, I will try her suggestion to pan sear and then lightly braise them in beer or non-alcoholic beer.   She told me this was actually her husband's idea.  Since there were limited rules here ---  Great suggestion and thanks for playing!

It was a good learning opportunity for me as well.  Less vibrato, MK – just get to the point!  If I ever do a give-away again, I'll be sure to make the challenge something that takes less time.   While I got a lot of new followers, I didn't get a lot of people playing the challenge. But I am happy to have all the new followers so welcome.  

I hope you will enjoy my recipes, and I hope you will visit CCC if you want to enter food contests.  You will meet some of the nicest people you will ever know, and you might win money and great prizes, too!


Anyway, in taking that "get on with it" cue, here is a quick post and a VERY easy dish which you can prepare in a SNAP.  It’s perfect for a hot summer night along with any type of grilled fish or chicken, even steak!  And you can mix this one up!

It’s a big serving of veggies, but then you really don’t need a starch.  And that will make you look better in your bathing suit.


Serves 2: 

1 large or two small zucchini, sliced
2 yellow summer squash, sliced
1 plum tomato, halved
Other Suggestions:  Halved small green tomatoes; tomatillos; asparagus (quartered)

For the Dressing:

2 tbs. freshly squeezed lemon Juice
1 tbs. orange juice (fresh or from concentrate)
2 tbs. canola and olive oil blend, plus more for brushing grill
1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
Fresh chopped herbs:  whatever you like (suggest basil, lemon or lime basil, or mint)
1 ounce goat cheese, crumbled

Note:  You can also add a little a little Greek Seasoning if you like is a bit more savory/salty, or you can substitute balsamic vinegar for the OJ if you’d like a tangier dish.  Also --  cutting the slices evenly will ensure more even cooking.


Add all veggies into a large bowl.  Whisk together dressing.  Pour dressing over and marinate vegetables for at least a half an hour at room temperature – a little longer if you have the time.

Preheat your grill or indoor grill pan to medium high heat. 

Once grill is heated, add the vegetables to the grill. Reserve the marinade.  Some will cook quicker than the others.  Flip with tongs as needed until you get nice grill marks on both sides and the vegetables are cooked to your liking. 

Note:  Red tomatoes only need to be grilled on one side, so I normally grill those last.

Once the vegetables are grilled, add them back to the bowl with the dressing and toss well.  Add the goat cheese was the vegetables are warm and stir to combine the flavors.  You can keep the salad warm under tin foil if you are going to be grilling your main coarse, or you can serve it add room temperature.

Add fresh chopped herbs right before serving.


I’ll be back with more light summer meal and side dish ideas.  See you soon!

*Blogger received no compensation from CCC other than the prize to give-away.