Albacore Poke, Jamaican Flavors

Albacore Poke, Jamaican Flavors

Albacore Tuna Poke with Jamaican Flair

This Albacore Tuna Poke is a colorful fusion dish, where sashimi-quality tuna and avocado cubes meet a marinade of coconut milk, tamarind paste, lime juice, and a touch of fish sauce.

With each bite, you’re gently transported to the sun-kissed shores of Jamaica. The tender tuna, the creaminess of coconut, the sweet-tart tamarind, and the citrusy notes of lime are a subtle nod to the island’s culinary charm. Roasted peanuts seal the deal as they incorporate the distinctive flavors of Jamaican jerk seasoning, a well-known and iconic element of Jamaican cuisine.

Albacore Poke, Jamaican Flavors

Jerk Peanuts

1 c. roasted/salted peanuts

3 T. jerk seasoning

2 T. olive oil

Toss peanuts with jerk seasoning and oil. Cook on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil in a 325°F pre-heated oven for 20 minutes. Let cool completely. There will be plenty peanuts leftover for snacking.

Jerk Seasoning

While readily available store-bought jerk seasoning can be a convenient option, there’s an undeniable charm in crafting your own jerk seasoning from scratch, utilizing an assortment of spices commonly found in your pantry. Whether your spice rack is fully stocked or you find yourself with a few ingredients missing, fear not; your homemade jerk seasoning will still infuse these peanuts with vibrant Jamaican flavors. Feel free to adjust ingredients to your liking.

1. 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
2. 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
3. 1/2 tablespoon dried onion salt
4. 2 teaspoons dried thyme
5. 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
6. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
7. 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
8. 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
9. 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
10. 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
11. 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
12. 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
13. 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
14. 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
15. 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
16. 1 tablespoon brown sugar

In a small bowl, mix everything except the brown sugar, then mix in the brown sugar (because it is moist). This will make more than needed for the peanut recipe. Store the remainder in an air-tight container for other uses.

Albacore Poke

1/2 c. coconut milk (unsweetened)

1 1/2 T. tamarind paste

1 T. lime juice

2 t. fish sauce

1 portion sashimi-quality albacore tuna (8 to 10 ounces), cubed

1 avocado (ripe but not soft), cubed

little multi-colored cherry tomatoes

cilantro, torn

mint, torn

scallion, sliced

flaky sea salt

In a medium bowl, whisk coconut milk with tamarind paste, lime juice, and fish sauce. Add cubed albacore, toss to coat and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Albacore Poke, Jamaican Flavors

To Plate

After 30 minutes, add avocado to the marinated albacore and gently toss to coat. Spoon albacore and avocado cubes into two or three shallow bowls. Arrange tomatoes, jerk peanuts, cilantro, mint, and scallions on top. Season with flaky sea salt. Serve extra sea salt and peanuts on the side. Vegetable-flavored corn chips add another pop of color contributing to the lively nature of Jamaican culinary style.

Inspiration

This dish was inspired by New Orleans Chef Nina Compton in Food & Wine magazine were she pairs her version with McBride Sisters Collection Reserve Chardonnay. “The crisp nature of the wine and the fact that it has just the right amount of acidity lend a great contrast to the richness of the tuna and coconut milk.”

More About Poke

My Interview with Chef Sam Choy on Sustainability and Poke here.

Known as the “Godfather of Poke,” Choy loves working with fresh fish and keeping it simple. The word poke (pronounced PO-kay) describes the method of preparation by cutting into cubes or slicing. Fish, vegetables, and even tofu – can all become poke. Choy is famous for making poke super-popular in the Islands when in 1991 he and a friend sponsored the first poke contest on the Big Island.

Salmon Cucumber Poke Bowl here

More Albacore

Albacore Tataki, Beluga Lentils, Lemon Soy Emulsion here

Elegant Seared Albacore, Roasted Mushrooms, Demi-Glace here

Flaming Seared Albacore, Peppercorn Brandy Cream Flambé here

Albacore Tataki, Beluga Lentils, Lemon Soy Emulsion

Albacore Tataki, Beluga Lentils, Lemon Soy Emulsion

Albacore Tataki with Beluga Lentils
Lemon Soy Emulsion, Chili Oil
Sesame Seeds, Basil, Cilantro

An exquisite culinary experience, often reserved for high-end Michelin-starred restaurants, combines raw bluefin tuna with Beluga caviar. Here, in this “tuna & caviar” alternative, the more sustainable and economical albacore takes center stage.

Beautiful wild Alaskan albacore is marinated in a delectable sweet-soy-ginger-garlic mixture then briefly seared and caramelized in a hot pan. This tantalizing dish is playfully paired with Beluga lentils, known for their small, glossy black appearance that resembles the famed caviar.

Beluga lentils offer their own distinct charm. They may not replicate the luxury of caviar, but they bring a delightful earthy character all their own to the delicious tuna, without the extravagant price tag!

Albacore Tataki Recipe

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Parisian Tuna Tartare

Parisian Tuna Tartare

Albacore Tuna Tartare in the “French Steak” Style

By many accounts, Restaurant Le Duc was the first in Paris to serve Nouvelle raw fish beginning around 1975, including salmon tartare and tuna tartare. In 1984 at Chaya Brasserie in Beverly Hills, Chef Shigefumi Tachibe put tuna tartare on the map. But STEAK tartare appeared in bistros long before, as early as the late 19th century in France.

This Parisian version of tuna tartare has none of the current popular ingredients – no avocado, no sesame oil, no ginger, no soy sauce. It is prepared in the old style of French Steak Tartare with classic components including onion, capers, pickles, and egg.

The sauce is a combination of mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. Instead of the standard raw egg yolk, a hard boiled egg yolk is pressed through a course mesh sieve to make a rich fluffy addition to the condiments.

Sushi-quality raw albacore tuna has a soft, buttery texture and mild flavor. The meat of albacore tuna species is white or pale pink in color. Albacore is simply lovely in this Parisian style first course, which is equally stellar as a happy hour appetizer with a glass of Rosé…

Parisian Tuna Tartare

Parisian Tuna Tartare Recipe

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Seared Albacore, Peppercorn Brandy Cream Flambé

Seared Albacore, Peppercorn Brandy Cream Flambé

Seared Albacore
Peppercorn Brandy Cream Flambé

Albacore au Poivre is special but not complicated. A sushi-grade piece of fish, four ingredients, plus FIRE are all it takes to prepare this exceptional dish. And it comes together in about 15 minutes. Hard to believe…

Peppercorns, butter, and brandy combine in a quick showy presentation. Rich cream is swirled in at the end. Et voilà!

Seared Albacore Au Poivre Recipe

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Seared Albacore, Roasted Mushrooms, Demi-Glace

Seared Albacore, Roasted Mushrooms, Demi-Glace

Seared Albacore, Roasted Trumpet Royale and Maitake Mushrooms, Sherry Demi-Glace

It was devastatingly elegant, perfect in its four-star simplicity with just three items: fish, mushroom, sauce. Ever since I saw this Facebook post by Eric Ripert, I knew I just had to make some version of his dish.

At Le Bernardin where “every fish gets treated according to its personality,” the Chef is a genius at pairing seafood with minimal ingredients and sauces that create synergy on the plate.

Chef Ripert is world-renowned for his exquisite, clean, seafood-centered cuisine where he simultaneously celebrates the beauty and elegance of vegetables. In the original dish that inspired my recipe, the Chef pairs a pristine piece of grilled hiramasa with roasted porcini & maitake and bone marrow bordelaise sauce.

Seared Albacore, Roasted Mushrooms, Demi-Glace Recipe

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