The wife had to work yesterday, and we had invited a couple over for dinner. It was my job, therefore, to cook said dinner. My grill had died the annual death (I just buy a cheap one each spring, and it lasts about a year before it rusts out and falls apart), so it had to be something in the oven. I first considered beef tenderloin, but you have to buy these huge hunks in order to get a decent price, and I really didn't want to have half a cow left over in the fridge.
There's a restaurant chain here called Ruby Tuesdays. (I've often wondered if they had to pay the Rolling Stones for the use of that name.) They had the best blackened tuna I've ever had in my life. Of course, as happens with so many things I love, they took it off the menu. But I figured blackened tuna couldn't be that hard to make. And I was right.
So I scoured the WWW for a recipe, and it worked amazingly well. I'll share here, in case you would like to try this some day.
First, you go get some tuna steaks. I got four 6-ounce steaks, and that was just right for four people. Adjust these proportions for more or less.
Then you make the blackening stuff up. (There's another node in here called Blackening Seasoning which has a slightly different ingredient list. I'm sure it's good, too.) But here's what I used:
After you mix all this up, take the tuna steaks and put 2 teaspoons of Canola oil on them. Then sprinkle the seasonings on both sides. Use your little greasy hands to rub the seasonings into the tuna. It gets a bit messy, but nothing good comes without a price. (There's a bigger price to pay later on with this dish.)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Take another teaspoon of Canola oil and put it in a large cast iron skillet. (No, you cannot use just an ordinary skillet, dammit!) Crank up an eye on the stove and heat the skillet until the oil begins to smoke. Then put the tuna steaks into the skillet and sear them for one minute each on each side.
Here is the second price to pay for this dish: The smoke is gonna kill you. Open a window, dumbass! Right now! Turn on a fan. Point the fan out the window to draw out the smoke. Jesus, I can't believe you didn't know this was going to happen. What were you thinking? Choking, are you? I feel your respiratory pain, brothers and sisters.
Now take the skillet with the tuna steaks and put it in the oven. Cook for around 10 minutes. You can tell when they're done by seeing if the fish flakes with a fork.
Serve with lemon wedges dipped in paprika. I'm not sure how much difference this makes, but those little yellow wedges with the red stuff on them are just cute as hell.
I like tartar sauce with fish, but I don't know how to make that stuff. So I just stopped at the restaurant nearby which makes the best tartar sauce I've had lately and asked them for some. They gave it to me at no cost.
I plan to be making this on the Iron Chef one day, so let me know what you think, and I'll make adjustments accordingly.