Garlic Tuna Steaks in Lemon Sauce

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This recipe is adapted from a magnificent little cookbook by Michalis Magoulas called The Cuisine of Ithaca. The original recipe calls for bonito steaks, but since they're hard to find, we've used tuna instead. In an unusual twist, the garlic grilled tuna is dipped in lemon juice after it's cooked. Olive oil is then added to the juice to make a sauce for the fish. Serve with steamed potatoes and a mixed-green salad.
4 servings (serving size: 1 piece of fish and 2 1/2 tablespoons sauce)


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4 (6-ounce) tuna steaks (about 1 inch thick)
2 teaspoons dried Greek oregano, divided
1/2 teaspoon sea or kosher salt
4 garlic cloves, peeled and quartered
Cooking spray
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 oregano sprigs (optional)


Sprinkle the fish with 1 teaspoon oregano and salt. Marinate in refrigerator 2 hours, turning occasionally.

Prepare grill.

Cut 2 slits into each steak. Insert 2 garlic quarters into each slit. Place the fish on a grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 4 minutes on each side until fish is medium-rare or until desired degree of doneness.

Combine 1 teaspoon oregano and the juice in a medium bowl. Dip grilled fish into juice mixture; place on plate. Add oil to remaining juice mixture; stir well with a whisk. Spoon juice mixture over fish; sprinkle with pepper. Garnish with oregano sprigs, if desired.

Wine Note: There's a lot of lemon in this dish, so be sure to choose a white wine that has a bit of citrus zing itself. (Avoid red wines; they clash badly with lemon.) Many fresh, light whites from around the Mediterranean would be ideal. Try, for example, Bodegas Morgaío Albariño, one of Spain's most exciting whites (about $19).

Created date

November 2002

Nutritional Information

Calories 283
Caloriesfromfat 37 %
Fat 11.7 g
Satfat 2 g
Monofat 5.5 g
Polyfat 2 g
Protein 39 g
Carbohydrate 4.2 g
Fiber 0.3 g
Cholesterol 63 mg
Iron 2.1 mg
Sodium 358 mg
Calcium 20 mg