Grilled Tuna with Niçoise Vinaigrette and Panisse
When I was living in the south of France, these flavors, combined or not, were prevalent. In brief – this dish is Provence on a plate. Panisse is usually served thin, like a crepe. I make it more as a substantial side-dish – cooling it, cutting it and sautéing it.
FOR THE PANISSE:
3 tablespoons olive oil
FOR THE VINAIGRETTE:
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
FOR THE TUNA:
4 sushi-grade tuna steaks, 6 – 7 ounces each, 1 1/4 -inch to 1 1/2 -inch thick
1. For the Panisse: Pour 1 tablespoon olive oil into a heavy-bottomed 2-quart saucepan and heat it over medium heat. Add the garlic and stock and bring it to over a simmer over high heat. Slowly whisk in the chickpea flour and all-purpose flour into the simmering stock until the mixture thickens and is smooth, with no lumps whatsoever, approximately 8 minutes.
2. Lower the heat and continue to cook until it takes on the consistency of loose mashed potatoes, approximately 5 minutes more.
3. Pour the mixture into an 8x8-inch Pyrex dish. Brush the top with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and allow to cool. Then cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, or up to 24 hours.
4. When ready to proceed, cut the chickpea cake into four rounds with a 3 1/2 - inch cookie cutter. Line a large plate with paper towels, and set it aside. Dust the Panisse rounds with all-purpose flour on both sides, and then shake off any excess.
4. Heat the remaining tablespoon oil in a heavy-bottomed, 10-inch, nonstick saute pan set over medium-high heat. Add the rounds and cook until lightly golden, approximately 3 minutes per side. Drain on the paper towel-lined plate, season with salt and 5 grinds of pepper, or to taste, and serve.
5. For the vinaigrette: Combine all the vinaigrette ingredients (except for the olive oil) in a medium-sized stainless steel bowl and whisk well to combine. Slowly whisk in the olive oil to emulsify.
6. For the tuna: Prepare a grill pan over high heat. Rub the tuna steaks with olive oil and season them with salt and 3 grinds of black pepper per side. When the grill pan is hot, sear the steaks for 3 – 4 minutes per side for rare, or longer for more well done.
7. Place one tuna steak on each of 4 warm plates. Drizzle with Niçoise Vinaigrette. Finish each plate with a serving of Panisse.
Image Source: Barefoot Contessa