Bright, flavorful Peruvian seared tuna with white beans is easy to throw together using sushi grade tuna, canned beans, fresh lime juice, garlic, cumin, chili and cilantro.
The internet is a great resource for finding recipes but I still love paging through good old fashioned cookbooks for inspiration. This white bean and seared tuna recipe comes from the cookbook Gran Cocina Latina, which is a 900 page volume about Latin American Food.
The book goes way beyond recipes, deep into the history and cultural fabric of the Latin American kitchen. The author, Maricel E. Presilla, explains that the rich robust complex quality of the cuisine is accomplished by the layers of Latin flavor that go into every dish.
The Adobo layer comes first. This is the one that seasons the meat or fish. It is often a paste or marinade, made from crushed garlic, spices, and citrus or vinegar. I made an adobo for this tuna using garlic, cumin, cayenne, salt, lime juice and olive oil.
The second layer is the Sofrito, which is the base for the sauce. It's a combination of finely diced aromatic ingredients, often with onions, that are sautéed in oil to bring out their depth of flavor.
This seared tuna and bean dish has a sofrito made up of garlic, red onion, and spicy peppers.
Some other important layers in Latin cooking, according to Presilla, are the balancing of the sweet, sour and salt; and imbuing foods with color from spices like paprika and achiote.
Here's an onion chopping tip, if you're interested: halve them through the root, slice them lengthwise, and then slice across the natural layers, which results in a nice small dice.
There is a fair amount of chopping prep in this dish, but when you taste all those delicious layers of flavor, I think you'll feel like it's worth the effort.
Other delicious fish recipes from across the globe:
Here's the recipe Seared Tuna with White Beans, Peruvian Style. If you try this recipe I hope you'll come back to leave a star rating and a comment. I'd love to know what you think.Print