Salad - Avocado - Grilled Tuna
Salad plays a secondary role in this, well, salad.That is to say -- lettuce. This salad requires only a few leaves of various kinds of baby lettuces (adult lettuces would do fine as well). These leaves are the supporting cast. The stars of the show are two ingredients not often thought of as a pair, but here they take the limelight.
Avocado and grilled tuna steak. Voila! Here in this picture we see them together before we open them up and see their potential power to provide a unique lunch or even dinner.
The idea for this came at the spur of the moment, but if you really want to follow us down this rabbit hole, it is best to plan ahead -- because one can never count on serendipity. You could grill the tuna steak especially for this meeting with avocado, but more likely you will do such grilling for some other meal (see Grilled Tuna) and then use the leftovers, if you are fortunate enough to have leftovers, a couple of days later. Avocados are notoriously under-ripe when you buy them at the supermarket, so you are going to have to let them ripen at home, maybe for as long as a week, before attempting to introduce one to a tuna. Avocados put a damper on the idea of just going out to buy them on the spur of the moment -- you have to plan ahead with avocados.
This is a Hass avocado, by the way. (It was not a good idea to photograph these against a black background, alas.)
Once we've assembled the right ingredients
- grilled tuna steak
composing the salad is almost as easy as eating the salad.
Make a pretty picture, do they not?
Peel one of the avocado halves. Or peel both halves if you are making more than one portion, or if you are preparing a dinner rather than a lunch.
Slice the avocado half, face down on the cutting board, as shown.
Plop the slices on top of some lettuce in the serving bowl.
Add a couple of tomato halves, grilled tomato halves, if available. (Tomatoes can be grilled fairly quickly. See Grilled veg 1.)
The finish is simple
Slice the grilled tuna steak in pretty much the same fashion as the avocado half.
Interleave the two as best you can.
Add the dressing. This dressing consists of EVOO, lemon juice, salt, pepper, a tiny touch of cumin, and finely grated Italian cheese. Parmesan or Romano are good, so is dried Mozzarella. A drop of soy sauce can also be added to the dressing.
Alternatively, omit the grated cheese and just go with the olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper
Grind coarse black pepper over the top.
Call it a day and sit down and enjoy this delicious meal.
For EVOO, click here.
A piece of sourdough bread is the perfect accompaniment. This piece is from a seeded sourdough baguette where the seeds include fennel seeds, which provide a taste of licorice (not the sweet licorice of childhood candy, but the fresh, subtle, distinctive taste of an actual vegetable, fennel).
Another name for avocado is alligator pear. You can see why. I wish this name were in common use: I would love to see "alligator pears" in the vegetable section of my supermarket. Technically, botanically technically, an avocado is a fruit, a big berry with a very big seed inside it. It is incredibly ancient. There is evidence for cultivation in what is now Mexico 5,000 years ago and evidence of its presence there from 10,000 years ago. Today it grows worldwide in subtropical regions, though Mexico still predominates (with Peru coming on strong). 80% of cultivated avocados in the world today are Hass avocados, a cultivar, from a "mother" tree, the cultivation of which was patented in 1935 by Rudy Hass of La Habra Heights, California.. Rudy was a postman for his day job. The number of vitamins and minerals in an avocado is astonishing.
A yellowfin tuna can swim at speeds up to -- wait for this -- 75 km/h (47 mph). Honk, honk I'm going to pass you. I won't even mention canned tuna; there's too much of it. Fresh tuna is loaded with Vitamin D and phosphorus and a fair amount of iron. Fresh tuna tastes delicious any way you prepare it, counting sashimi as a type of preparation and an especially delicious way to eat this fish.
Part of a series
Pictures, pictures, pictures
Series within series, actually. Food & Cooking, for example, then -- within that -- series on vegetables, fruits, seafood, meat, etc. Books, too. Ideas, too. Travel, too. Key virtues:. pictures, clear step-by-step text. Delicious -- whether foods or ideas! All of the series, and all of the items in each series, can be found at this link: Lee White's Department Store
Real Meal. Unlike fancy food mags, where images are hyped and food itself is secondary, all pix shown here are from a real meal, prepared and eaten by me and my friends. No throwing anything away till perfection is achieved. This is the real deal --- a Real Meal.