Seared Albacore Tuna with Sauce Gribiche

from The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook by Ellen Jackson. Photo by Gentl & Hyers.

Recipe by Seth Caswell/emmer&rye, Seattle, WA

Lightly seared albacore tuna rubbed with a fragrant mixture of toasted coriander, herbs and orange zest tastes even better eaten in thick slices, with spoonfuls of the cold, mayonnaise-style egg sauce the French call Sauce Gribiche.  Serve the tuna with fresh tender lettuce leaves and crusty bread for lunch, or accompanied by herbed crackers as a starter.

Makes 8 servings

  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, divided

  • 1 albacore tuna loin, about 1-1/2 pounds, trimmed and portioned into three 8-ounce rectangles

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon coriander seed, toasted and ground

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped, toasted orange zest

  • Sauce Gribiche (see recipe below)

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a heavy skillet over high heat.  Season the tuna pieces with salt and freshly ground black pepper and, when the pan is very hot, sear the tuna 45 seconds on each side.  Immediately transfer to a plate to cool in the refrigerator.  Mix the coriander, cilantro, parsley, orange zest and remaining tablespoon of oil.  Rub this mixture over the cool seared tuna and marinate overnight.

To serve, evenly slice each piece of tuna into 8. Arrange three slices each on 8 plates, or arrange the slices on a large platter. Dollop a spoonful of sauce gribiche on each slice of tuna and serve with herb crackers or crusty bread, or a few leaves of tender baby lettuces lightly dressed with some of the sauce gribiche.

Sauce Gribiche

  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled, whites and yolks separated

  • 3 shallots, finely chopped

  • 1/4 cup sherry wine vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chervil

  • 2 tablespoons finely fresh flat-leaf chopped parsley

  • 2 tablespoons chopped pickled fiddlehead ferns (or cornichons)

  • 3 tablespoons capers, drained and chopped   

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Press the egg yolks through a mesh sieve into a nonreactive bowl, or break up and mash with a fork. Add the shallots and sherry vinegar to the yolks and whisk until well combined.  Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while continuing to whisk. When dressing is thickened, fold in the finely chopped egg whites, herbs, pickled fiddlehead ferns and capers and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Cover and refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to meld.