Monday, October 13, 2008

Last supper #3: Laurent Tourondel

On Saturday night, we tried the Last Supper of Laurent Tourondel (of BLT Steak, BLT Fish, etc.). His request was for a seared tuna BLT the way he makes it at BLT Fish Shack in New York City, accompanied by French Fries and Heinz ketchup.

This was one of the simpler Last Suppers I've made so far and it's one I'll make again... and again. There are a lot of flavors packed into this hearty sandwich: Tuna, avocado, olive, bacon, arugula, lemon, egg, Parmeggiano Reggiano, a little mayo. The list seems neverending. But pile it all on and it's absolutely delicious. I prepped the toppings ahead of time so when we cooked the fish it was still warm.

The fish was about 1/2 inch thick and we grilled it on medium heat for just 1 minute per side. Any longer and it would have been overcooked. And who wants over cooked sashimi grade yellowfin tuna???

I also made homemade fries. I used a mandolin to cut 2 Idaho potatoes into 1/4 inch thick straws. I wrapped them in a towel in the fridge fro about an hour to remove some of the starch and let them dry. I then fried them in canola oil at 325 degrees for about 4 minutes. I let them drain on paper towels and cool for about 30 minutes then fried them again in the same oil, this time for about 2 minutes at 375 degrees. Golden brown and yummy!

If rare tuna doesn't scare you off, try this sandwich! the recipe looks long but it's easy. Oh and at Laurent's suggestion, we served it with a little Sriracha - Vietnamese hot sauce. Gave it a nice little kick!

BLT Grilled Tuna Sandwich

Serves 6

1½ pounds yellowfin tuna, cut into 12 slices, about 1⁄3 inch thick
Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
½ cup olive oil
4 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ teaspoon chopped garlic
1 large bunch arugula, tough stems removed (about 2 cups)
½ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup Tapenade
1 loaf rustic Italian bread, cut into twelve ½-inch-thick diagonal slices, toasted
12 slices applewood-smoked bacon, cooked until crisp
1 medium red onion, sliced
2 ripe tomatoes, sliced
3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and sliced
6 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, thinly sliced with a vegetable peeler or mandoline slicer
1 ripe avocado, preferably Hass
1 bunch fresh basil, tough stems removed

GRILL THE TUNA Preheat a grill pan or barbecue grill to high heat. Sprinkle the tuna on both sides with salt and pepper. Place the tuna on the pan or grill rack and cook 1 to 2 minutes per side, or until rare to medium-rare, depending on your preference.

DRESS THE ARUGULA In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Add the arugula and toss well.

ASSEMBLE THE SANDWICHES Spread some of the mayonnaise and tapenade on each slice of bread. Divide the bacon, onion, tomatoes, eggs, cheese, and avocado over half of the slices. Top with the tuna, basil, and the arugula salad. Cover with the remaining bread, coated-sides down.

TO SERVE Cut the sandwiches in half and serve immediately.

Project Last Supper score:
3 down, 27 to go.
Not sure which meal we will do next, but it won't be this weekend since we will be out of town for a charity walk.

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