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Photos, Recipes & CookTales For Those Who Enjoy Cooking




Serves 2

A CookTale

When we lived in New York City in the eighties and early nineties, there were three Japanese Restaurants that like a siren call kept bringing me back. Those were the days before Nobu, Masa, Momofuku and the Sushi Bar explosion. My restaurants were Japonica on University Place and 13th. Hatsuhana on 48th between Fifth and Madison, and Nippon on 51st off Lexington. What pleasant memories they bring back! No matter how diligently I try, If I’m lucky I can get to a halfway mark in my Asian attempts.


1 Sushi Grade Tuna Steak (12 Ounces)
1/2 cup of toasted Sesame Seeds, white & black combined, or white only (more if needed)
1 TB of Peanut Oil

1/2 cup of Soy Sauce
1/4 cup chopped Scallions
2 TB of fresh Lemon Juice
1 tsp of Sesame Oil
1 tsp of fresh ginger (grated)
1/2 tsp of Cornstarch (dissolved in Water)


1. Slice the Tuna Steak horizontally in half or have the fishmonger do it. You want to end up with 2- 1/2″ pieces.

2. Combine the Soy Sauce, chopped Scallions, Lemon Juice & fresh Ginger in a large bowl. Add the two Tuna Steaks to coat, & marinate in the fridge for about 20 minutes.

3. Preheat a cast iron pan to the highest stove top temperature. Place the Sesame Seeds on a plate. Remove the Tuna steaks from the fridge, brushing the scallions off the Steaks.

4. One at a time, coat the Tuna in the Sesame Seeds on both sides & edges, pressing the Sesame Seeds into the Steaks so they’ll adhere.

5. Add a thin layer of Peanut Oil to the heated pan & add the Tuna. Cook for no more than 15 seconds to a side. (only slightly longer if you prefer, you do want them quite rare). Remove to a platter & keep warm.

6. Pour the reserved marinade into a small sauce pot & bring to a boil. Add the Cornstarch & water, stirring with a whisk to completely dissolve. Simmer for about 3-4 minutes, until the sauce thickens. Spoon onto each plate, top with a Tuna Steak & surround with the reserved Scallions.

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