Ciao Italia: My Lifelong Food Adventures in Italy
Mary Ann's newest book contains over 150 recipes, 60 gorgeous food photos, and many scenic pictures of Italy taken by Mary Ann on her travels through the years.
14 to 16 ounces yellowfin or bluefin tuna – preferably a thick chunk
1 small fennel bulb, sliced paper thin (save a few fronds for garnish)
1 grapefruit, cut into sections – no ribs, no pith
1 thumb size piece (1 ounce) fresh ginger, peeled
1 large or 2 small shallots, very finely diced
1/2 teaspoon fennel pollen (optional)
2 tablespoons fruity, green olive oil
2 teaspoons aged Balsamic vinegar
Coarse sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Before you start: chill the 4 plates (9 or 10 inch) that you will serve the tuna on.
Using a very sharp knife, slice the tuna across the widest part, very thinly. Place the tuna slices between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and, using the flat side of a light cleaver or even wide chef’s knife, pound the tuna lightly, a few pieces at a time. Arrange the slices to fill the center of the chilled plates. Cover each plate with plastic wrap pressed lightly against the tuna. Keep chilled. This can be done hours in advance.
Combine the sliced fennel and the grapefruit sections with a bit of the grapefruit juice. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and keep refrigerated. This can also be done an hour or 2 in advance. Reserve 4 fennel fronds for garnish, as well as a few that are finely chopped, (2 tablespoons), to sprinkle on the Carpaccio.
Use a micro plane or fine grater and grate the ginger. Place in a bowl.
When ready to serve, uncover the plates. Lightly rub the tuna with the freshly grated ginger. Place a small heap of the fennel and grapefruit mixture in the center of each plate. Now sprinkle the chopped shallots, chopped fennel fronds and fennel pollen over the tuna (and the grapefruit mixture). Drizzle with olive oil and a few drops of Balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle on the sea salt and then grind the pepper over the plates. Serve immediately.
This recipe is featured on show 2013 – Tuna!