Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly with Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa

Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly with Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa

Hello Everyone! I know I made it sound like I’d be gone for a while over on my IG stories last month, but I’m back feeling inspired and motivated to push through the year with fun recipes that I have been putting together during my short hiatus for Amcarmen’s Kitchen.

For the month of June I’ll be featuring one of my favourite fruits of all time – Pitaya or also known more commonly in English as Dragon Fruit, more specifically the red-fleshed variety. The name ‘Dragon Fruit’ was derived from the overall exterior aesthetic of the fruit, which has a leather-like skin and prominent scaly spikes. Pitaya (or pitahaya) is the name derived from Mexico, which refers to the name of tall cacti species with flowering fruits.

Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa

Dragon Fruits grow on long, thin, and vining cactuses (yes, this is also a valid pluralisation of the word cactus). On the outside, Red Dragon Fruits look almost identical to the white-fleshed variety. The pulp of a Dragon Fruit has a texture that is similar to a kiwi, with small and black edible seeds throughout. Red Dragon Fruits are sweet, but not as sweet as the white-flesh variety, and has a mild acidity to it. In addition, these fruits pack a lot of nutrients that are beneficial for our health. They are low in calories and are a good source of iron, magnesium, and vitamins C & E. Dragon Fruits also contain prebiotics, which helps promote the growth of healthy bacteria and potentially improve the balance of them in your gut.

Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly with Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa

Tonight, I’ll be whipping up an easy one for y’all. The recipe title may sound intimidating, but it’s really all “just for fancy show” to draw creative links between the fruit itself, and Dragons. Read below for further details on coming up with the name for this dish. This salsa recipe can be modified based on the availability of seasonal ingredients and what you have readily available in your pantry. So feel free to get creative here! You may also substitute the dragon fruit for kiwi, mango, nectarines, or peaches. Just make sure to use a firm and barely ripe fruit so that it will hold its shape in the salsa.

Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa Ingredients

PREP TIME 20 MINS | COOKING TIME 30 MINS | SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 kg fresh tuna belly slab, washed and pat-dried
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season

For the salsa

  • 1 small dragon fruit, diced*
  • 1 small red onion, minced
  • 1 red bird’s eye chilli, seeds in and minced
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • Handful of finely chopped basil leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

*The grocer that I bought them from only had gigantic dragon fruits, where the one I bought and pictured for this recipe was about 800g! In this case, I only used half of the fruit for the recipe.

METHOD

Breaking down a dragon fruit may look intimidating, but it really is quite simple.

  1. Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa: Slice the fruit in half lengthwise and spoon around the outer edge of the fruit to scoop out the flesh. Dice and place in a medium-sized mixing bowl together with the minced onion, chillies, basil leaves, vinegar, and olive oil. Stir to combine and season to taste. Set aside in the fridge for the flavours to infuse and chill.
  2. Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly: Rub the tuna belly with olive oil and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  3. Dracarys.

If you don’t understand step #3, then skip ahead to step #4 (also, this means we can’t be friends… Just kidding! *cheeky grin*)

  1. Flame-grill on lightly greased grates over hot coals for about 3 to 5 minutes on each side or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Feel free to adjust grilling time depending on how you like your tuna to be cooked.
  2. Remove from the heat and transfer to a serving plate. Serve hot with the Dragon Fruit Salsa and a salad for a complete meal. Enjoy!

Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly with Fiery Dragon Fruit Salsa

Just before I wrap things up with tonight’s post, I just wanted to mention that the featured recipe is actually a mash-up of ideas between a friend and myself. I already had the choice of fruit in mind that I wanted to work with for the month and what to make of it to pair with a beautiful slab of tuna belly. He suggested that I cut the fruit in half, scoop out its flesh, chop it up, and serve it in its skin/casing. I mentioned that I already had the idea to make a fiery (spicy) Dragon Fruit Salsa to go with the tuna belly, to which I said I could take his idea of serving the salsa in the dragon fruit skin. In the end I put that idea aside just because there wasn’t much contrast with the colours of the salsa and the dragon fruit skin. Nonetheless, I’ll keep this idea for another dish!

In addition, while exchanging ideas, I mentioned that I thought of grilling the tuna belly, to which he suggested to play with the idea of ‘dragon’ in the name of the dish and hence Dragon-flamed Tuna Belly. It is still essentially flame-grilled tuna belly but Dragon-flamed sounded way more cool.

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Auguest 2018: Wendy Chok

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast

Hello to all amcarmenskitchen’s readers! I am Wendy, a petite woman in my mid 20s; and of course, I love baking and cooking. For me, spending time in the kitchen is just so therapeutic and satisfying, especially when you get to enjoy the food you’ve made after long hours of preparation. Additionally, I have this motherly instinct to feed people with a lot of food, and whenever someone tells me that the food that I make is delicious and would like to have it again next time around, I feel like I’ve won the title of Brunei’s MasterChef!

I recently started up a blog known as Peek A Pastry, however I haven’t been very active in updating it. I still cook and bake frequently, and have posted a few of my successes in the kitchen over on my Instagram page – @peek.a.pastry. Ally was actually the one who encouraged me to take the first step in opening up a blog, and so I did even though I simply just couldn’t commit to it. After given the opportunity to write down my recipes for Ally’s blog for my guest posts for this month, I got the feel of what it was like to write for a blog and this might very well the kick I need for me to start penning down my recipes and actually write!

Before I share with you my savoury breakfast idea in the form of a Pizza Toast, I’m going to share with you my recipe for Rustic Bread as the base for this toast. Of course, feel free to get store-bought bread too. Note: bake your bread the night before so that you’ll have it ready for a quick brekkie fix the next morning!

Rustic Bread

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast Method

PREP TIME 2 HOURS 30 MINS* | COOKING TIME 50 MINS | MAKES 1 LOAF

*Allow for an additional 12 hours for dough to rise overnight

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 & 1/3 cups plain flour
  • 1 & 1/4 cups water, at room temperature
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 1/8 tsp yeast
  • 1/2 cup boiling water (when baking)

METHOD

  1. In a large bowl, mix the plain flour, salt, and yeast together until combined. Slowly add in the room temperature water into the flour mixture until the dough starts to become sticky, just like the texture of slime. It’s okay to have a little bit of lumps in the mixture, but make that it is not too lumpy. Cover the bowl with cling wrap and let it rest at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
  2. After 20 minutes, fold the dough by wetting your hands and scoop them by the edge; palm facing you and fingers under the dough, pull it upwards and flip it across, as if you are helping a baby with his or her napkin. Pull and flip for about 5 times in total for every edge of the dough in the bowl. Set aside and let it rest for a further 20 minutes and repeat this action for another 3 times (four folds in total). Along way, your dough will rise a little, but not too much.
  3. After the fourth and last fold, rest the dough for 12 hours overnight.
  4. After 12 hours the next morning, you will see that your dough has risen and bubbling like crazy! Place a piece of parchment paper over a baking tray and lightly sprinkle a bit of plain flour atop as well as on the dough.
  5. Scrape the edges of the dough with your fingers so they will come out from the bowl easily and onto the parchment paper. Sprinkle some more flour on top of the dough and start to fold again.
  6. Start shaping the dough by cupping the bottom of the dough. Cup and twist until you get a nice round shape. At this point your dough should be feel supple and bouncy. Use your finger and slightly press on the dough and release. It should recover back to its initial shape instantly.
  7. Grease a large clean heatproof bowl and transfer the dough, together with the parchment paper underneath it to the bowl. Cover using a clean kitchen towel and let it rest in the bowl for another 50 minutes before baking it.
  8. Preheat the oven at 230C (450F or gas mark 8), add the boiling water into a small heat-proof bowl and place into the oven. Then place dough in the bowl into the oven and bake for 50 minutes.
  9. Once done, remove the bread from the oven. Remove from the bowl and leave to cool down for at least an hour on an elevated rack before slicing into it. Brush off excessive flour on top.

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast

And now your Rustic Bread is ready to be topped with your favourite toppings! Follow the recipe below for a delicious Tuna Chunk Pizza Toast!

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast

PREP TIME 5 MINS | COOKING TIME 15 MINS | SERVES 3-4

INGREDIENTS

  • Diced red onions
  • Mayonnaise
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Pineapple bits
  • Rustic bread slices
  • Tomato paste
  • Tuna chunks in olive oil (or you can use any tuna you want)
  • Unsalted butter

METHOD

  1. Spread the butter generously at the sides of the bread to give it a crunchy bite.
  2. Smother the tomato paste at the centre of each slice and start rustically building up all your toppings. Put as much as you like – I like to put tuna first then pineapple bits, followed by the diced onions. Season it with Parmesan cheese and finish it off with dollops of mayonnaise here and there. Bake them for about 15 minutes at 240C (475F or gas mark 9).
  3. Once done, serve and enjoy with a hot cup of coffee!

Rustic Bread: Pizza Toast

I am a savory person and I love everything savory. It might be because I’m Hakka (one of the Chinese dialects). Just to give you a little bit of imagination when you bite into this toast, let me paint a picture of it for you. Imagine as you take that first bite into the crunchy edge of the toast before everything else, and then you a change of texture to the chewy and savoury bread. Followed by all of the topping in that single bite; the umami and flaky tuna, the crunchy, spicy and sweet diced onions, the richness of the slightly burnt dollops of mayonnaise that sort of just melt in your mouth, engulfing everything together. Then here come the sweet and juicy pineapples, cutting through all the richness happening in that tiny space. You start over again as you take another bite to experience this rich and salivating moment!

Photo Courtesy & Recipe Copyright © 2018 | peekapastry

– Wendy (Peek A Pastry)

myTaste.com