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Grilled Tuna with Fried Manchego
© Tina Rupp

Grilled Tuna with Fried Manchego

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Chef Way Jose Garces serves seared tuna alongside cheese croquettes, which are made from a mixture of béchamel and grated Manchego and gelatin that's then rolled into balls, breaded and deep-fried.

Easy Way Skip the croquettes and instead just bread and pan-fry small slices of Manchego cheese until crisp on the outside and oozing on the inside.

  1. 1 large tomato, finely diced
  2. 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  3. 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  4. 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
  5. 1 teaspoon honey
  6. 1 garlic clove, minced
  7. 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  8. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing and frying
  9. Salt
  10. 1 pound center-cut tuna steak (about 1 1/2 inches thick)
  11. Freshly ground pepper
  12. 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  13. 1 large egg, beaten
  14. 1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs
  15. One 1/2-pound wedge of Manchego cheese, sliced 1/4 inch thick and cut into triangles
  16. 1 large heart of romaine—large leaves coarsely chopped, small leaves left whole
  1. In a large bowl, mix the diced tomato with the white wine vinegar, shallot, thyme, honey, garlic, crushed red pepper and the 1/4 cup of olive oil until emulsified. Season the tomato vinaigrette generously with salt.
  2. Heat a grill pan and brush it with olive oil. Brush the tuna steak with olive oil and season it with salt and pepper. Grill the tuna over moderately high heat, turning, until seared on the outside but still rare on the inside, about 13 minutes. Let the tuna rest for 5 minutes, then cut into slices.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 1/4 inch of olive oil in a large skillet until shimmering. Put the flour, egg and bread crumbs in 3 shallow bowls. Dip the cheese triangles in the flour, then in the egg and finally in the bread crumbs, pressing to help them adhere. Add the cheese to the hot oil and fry over moderately high heat, turning once, until golden and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the fried Manchego on a rack and sprinkle lightly with salt.
  4. Add the romaine to the vinaigrette in the bowl and toss well. Mound the dressed salad onto large plates. Arrange the tuna slices on the plates and stack the fried manchego slices alongside the salad. Serve immediately.

Suggested Pairing

Fresh, berry-flavored rosé.

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