Fresh Tuna and Butter Lettuce Wraps with Yuzu Ponzu

A recipe from Emeril Lagasse, from the 2007 Classic in Aspen.

video Emeril Lagasse: Lettuce Wraps

Plus: More Appetizer Recipes and Tips

  • Servings: 4 First-Course Servings

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  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • One 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced 1/8 inch thick
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 6 tablespoons bottled yuzu ponzu sauce
  • 1/3 cup bottled yuzu juice or fresh lime juice
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 small package mung bean noodles
  • Toasted sesame oil, for drizzling
  • Pinch of salt
  • 12 butter lettuce leaves
  • 9 ounces sushi-grade ahi tuna, cut into twelve 1/3-inch-thick slices
  • 12 paper-thin slices of jalapeño, soaked in ice water
  • Sriracha chili sauce, for garnishing

How to make this recipe

  1. In a small nonreactive saucepan, combine the soy sauce, sugar, ginger, lemon juice, orange juice, yuzu ponzu sauce and yuzu juice. Bring to a simmer, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool completely.

  2. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 1/2 inches of vegetable oil to 350°. Add the noodles and fry for 30 seconds, turning once with a slotted spoon until puffed. Drain the noodles on paper towels. Drizzle the noodles with sesame oil and season with salt. Gently break the noodles into 1-inch pieces and mound 2 tablespoons on each lettuce leaf.

  3. Arrange the tuna slices on a large dinner plate and pour 1/4 cup of the Yuzu Ponzu over the fish. Let stand for 1 minute, then turn the fish and let stand for 1 minute longer. Set a tuna slice on each lettuce leaf and drizzle 1/4 teaspoon of the sauce on each leaf. Garnish each piece of tuna with a slice of jalapeño, a drop of Sriracha and a cilantro sprig and serve at once.

Make Ahead

The Yuzu Ponzu sauce can be refrigerated for up to 1 month.

Suggested Pairing

Citrusy, full-bodied Riesling.

Contributed By Photo © David Malosh Published February 2011

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