Grilled Tuna with “Fired” Spices


1 1/2 lbs tuna fillets, cut into 2-3″ square chunks
1 to 2 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, such as Manzanillo Olive Oil
1/4 Cup each finely chopped fresh Rosemary, Basil and Thyme
Coarse Sea Salt and Black Pepper

1/2 Cup soy sauce
1/4 Cup Runamok maple syrup
1/4 Cup pear nectar
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and lightly crushed with side of knife
1 two-inch piece fresh Ginger, peeled, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices and lightly crushed with side of knife

2 Tbsp Coriander Seeds
2 Tbsp Juniper Berries
2 Tbsp dried Rosemary
2 Tbsp crumbled dried Bay Leaves
2 Tbsp dried Oregano
2 Tbsp dried Thyme
8 medium radishes, slivered, for garnish.


For the tuna: Lightly brush the fish all over with olive oil, then sprinkle with the fresh herbs. Refrigerate in plastic wrap for 2 to 4 hours.

For the sauce and fire spices: In a heavy saucepan, combine the sauce ingredients. Gently simmer until liquid is reduced by a third, about 15 minutes. Strain and cool.

In a separate bowl, combine the coriander, juniper, rosemary, bay leaves, oregano and thyme.

Prepare a grill for direct grilling over high heat. Brush and oil the grate. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Just before grilling, toss the fire spices on the coals (or on the bars, ceramic bricks or lava stones of a gas grill).

Sear the tuna all over, 1 to 2 minutes a side. Transfer to a cutting board and thinly slice crosswise. Spoon the sauce onto plates, arrange the tuna slices on top and sprinkle with the radishes.

Yield: 6 to 8 appetizer servings.
Adapted from the New York Times