January 7th, 2011

It’s the beginning of a new year and a new school quarter, meaning it’s the perfect time to change your diet and begin eating more healthily if you aren’t already. This week’s recipe is all about heart health, and it’s pretty tasty, too! Since sushi (especially anything spicy) is one of my favorite foods to eat when I dine out, I thought a fish recipe would be a good one to try. While  my friend isn’t a huge fan of cooked fish, he really enjoyed this seared Ahi tuna dish for its texture and complementary cilantro sauce. For those of you who can’t stand the taste of fish, you can’t taste it at all (even without the sauce), so fresh Ahi tuna is a good place to start if you want to begin incorporating more fish into your diet. Not only is it healthy, but it’s so easy to make, too. I have ever cooked fish before and I found the searing process to be very simple and quick. Anyone can do it!

Fresh tuna is not only high in protein, but it is also high in omega-3 fatty acids for improving the ratio of good to bad cholesterol and vitamin B6 for lowering homocysteine, a compound that damages artery walls.

, which is used in the sauce for the tuna as well as the pico de gallo, controls blood sugar levels. Like tuna, cilantro increases good cholesterol while reducing bad cholesterol.

This week’s recipe also contains two different kinds of chile peppers: serrano peppers for the pico de gallo and jalapeños for the sauce. Chile peppers have capsaicin, which promotes heart health by reducing cholesterol and triglycerides.

The avocado slices, which are used to cool down the heat of the peppers, contain oleic acid for lowering bad cholesterol. As a good source of potassium, avocados regulate blood pressure. The avocado is the icing on the cake for this heart-healthy recipe as it is high in folate, a nutrient which lowers the risk of heart disease.

You can’t go wrong with this recipe: easy, quick, heart-healthy, and best of all, deeeelicious.

Seared Ahi Tuna with Pico de Gallo & Avocado
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Serves 4

For the Pico de Gallo
3 ripe Roma tomatoes, chopped (with juice)
1/3 cup chopped white onion
½ of a chopped cucumber
1 ½ tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
½ serrano chile, seeded and very finely diced
Juice of ½ of a lime
Salt, to taste

In a medium bowl, stir together all ingredients to combine. Adjust seasonings to taste.

For the Seared Tuna
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeño chile, seeded and de-ribbed
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup soy sauce
½ tsp sugar
¼ cup plus 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ lbs of sashimi-quality tuna
Salt and pepper to taste
1 avocado, sliced

In a mixing bowl, combine the cilantro, jalapeno, garlic, lime juice, soy sauce, sugar, salt, pepper, and ¼ cup of olive oil. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat and coat with the remaining 2 tbsp. of olive oil. Sprinkle the tuna pieces with salt and pepper. Sear the tuna for a minute on each side. Pour half of the cilantro mixture into the pan to coat the fish. Transfer the seared tuna to plates. Serve with the sliced avocado and drizzle the cilantro sauce over the whole plate.

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3 Responses to “WK Loves Tuna (and so does your heart!)”

  1. Marisa says:

    I love ahi tuna! Where can you get it sushi-grade? It looks absolutely delicious.

  2. Brynn says:

    You can get it at Trader Joe’s in the fresh meat & fish section!

  3. Jessica Fong says:

    YUM! this looks really good!! This reminds me of a dish I ate at a restaurant called Bear Fish