Black and White Sesame Encrusted Tuna Appetizer

finished tuna dish lg

This chilled tuna appetizer uses a Sashimi grade tuna that can be served very rare. Check with your local grocery store to see if it is available. Many higher end grocery stores are now selling sashimi (can be eaten raw or rare) tuna. It often comes frozen to ensure freshness.



  • 1 pound Sashimi quality tuna loin
  • 4 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 4 tablespoons black sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • approximately 3 tablespoons olive oil for searing the tuna

Apricot Sauce

  • 1 jar apricot preserves
  • 2/3 cup apple juice
  • Purchased plum sauce (available at most supermarkets in the Oriental section)
  • one cup alfalfa sprouts
  • chives and edible flower garnish

Mango Salsa

  • one ripe mango
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1/2 Jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (optional)


To prepare the tuna

raw tuna loinOur tuna comes in large 4 to 5 pound loins. We cut a section of tuna about 3 inches in diameter for this appetizer. You can use any size tuna piece, however for slicing and presentation, this cut works well.

Place both sesame seeds on a flate plate. Mix in the ginger. Roll the tuna loin in the mixture and coat all the sides and ends well.

tuna in pan 2Heat the olive oil in a cast iron skillet (or a heavy stainless steel skillet) . Put in enough olive oil to cover the bottom. Heat until very hot. (Make sure you have your hood fan on for proper ventilation as the tuna will smoke when cooked).

When hot, carefully add the tuna using long tongs. Sear on all sides for about 15 seconds each if serving rare. If you want the tuna to be done more, simply cook the tuna a little longer on each side.

tuna on paper towelRemove the tuna loin from the skillet and place on paper towels to drain any excess oil.   When cool, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. The tuna can be made one day ahead and kept covered in the refrigerator.

To make the apricot sauce

Remove the preserves and place them in a sauce pan with the apple juice.   Heat until the preserves are dissolved. Place the mixture into a blender and process until smooth. Cool and refrigerate until ready to use.

To make the mango salsa

Dice the mango. To do this, carefully slice off the sides of the mango around the large seed in the middle. Slice a “criss cross”
separting mango piecesin the flesh without going thru the skin.

Carefully remove the flesh from the skin by using a sharp knife. Place mango in a bowl.   Combine the remaining ingredients
with the mango. Toss to combine and refrigerate until ready to use.

Place the chilled tuna loin on a cutting surface. Carefully slice the tuna into thin slices on a slight diagonal.slicing tuna

Place a small mound of alfalfa sprouts in the middle of a plate. Layers three to four slices of the tuna around the sprouts.

Dot the plate with the plum sauce and apricot sauce (we place the sauce in plastic squeeze bottles to make this easier). Drag a toothpick through the sauce to create a small “tail” on each dot for decoration.

Top the tuna with a little of the mango salsa. Place two chives in the top of the salsa and garnish with an edible flower.tuna with flower

Repeat with the remaining tuna and salsa on additional plates.



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