Years ago when I was living in New York, a friend of mine worked as a bar tender on the upper east side. As such, he got to sample the chef's test recipes. One of these recipes was a yuca nori crusted swordfish. At the time, I couldn't figure out how they could get the yuca to stick to the nori. When I read this week's challenge I thought I would give it a try with coconut and it turns out it is ridiculously easy! The crispy, lightly sweet coconut crust on this wrapped tuna requires a little salt to balance and bind the flavors. The sweet and slightly spicy sauce brings it all together in perfect tropical harmony. I should have tried this years ago. I vow never again to be intimidated in the kitchen! —nycnomad
The yellowfin tuna should be cut into 2 thick rectangular pieces, approximately 1"x1"x2". (Note, if you like your tuna well done, you may want to pre-seer it and then assemble the layers so that the crust doesn't burn).
If the nori hasn't been toasted, toast the nori by passing it over one of the stove's burners. Make sure the flame is low because nori burns very easily. This is done to make it more flavorful and to make it a little easier to manipulate.
Cut the nori to about the same width as your tuna. Align one edge of the tuna with the nori, leaving half of the tuna off the edge of the nori. this will mean that as you wrap, the nori will meet up in the middle of one side, reducing the wrist that it comes unstuck during the cooking process.
Simple roll the tuna in the seaweed and trim off the excess with a pair of sheers. Repeat with the other piece of tuna.
In the mean time, heat the coconut oil in a small skillet over a medium heat.
Prepare 3 bowls; one with a blend of coconut flour and sea salt, one with shredded coconut and another with a beaten egg white.
Brush the nori wrapped tuna lightly with egg white.
Dredge the tuna in coconut flour and dip it again in the egg white. This will form the "glue" that will bind the shredded coconut.
Roll the tuna in shredded coconut then roll it again in egg white.
Finally pass it one last time in the shredded coconut.
Using a pair of tongs, place the tuna on the hot skillet. Watch it carefully and sear for about 20-30 seconds each side or until golden brown, grasping the tuna from the long ends so as not to disrupt the crust.
When each piece has finished cooking, remove it from the pan and plate immediately, cutting on the diagonal adds flair.
Spicy Citrus Mango Emulsion (not pictured)
In a small saucepan combine the orange juice, lime juice, mango, chili, sugar and ginger. Bring the mixture to a boil over a medium flame, then lower the flame and allow the liquid to simmer until it has reduced by half the volume.
Allow the liquid to cool and then strain. Wisk in the vinegar and the grape seed oil to create the emulsion. Adjust the flavor with salt and pepper, to suite your taste.
Drizzle over the seared coconut nori crusted tuna or serve in a separate dish for dipping.