After making Nobu's miso marinated black cod, I decided to try and make my other favorite dish there: the spicy tuna with crispy sushi rice. The spicy tuna is pretty much what you'd expect--fresh tuna chopped up and mixed with spicy mayonnaise and scallions. The genius of the dish is the crispy sushi rice. Sushi rice is chilled and cut into cubes, then flash fried just so the outside is crispy and in the inside is still sweet and chewy. Paired with the spicy tuna and dipped in some light soy, the flavor and texture combination is irresistible.
For the recipe below, I used Alton Brown's recipe for making sushi rice, The Kitchn's recipe for making spicy tuna, and the method for making the crispy sushi rice from Nobu's Vegetarian Cookbook.
Spicy Tuna with Crispy Sushi Rice
serves 2-3 as an appetizer
1 cup uncooked sushi rice or short grain rice
1 cup water, plus extra for rinsing rice
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
1 lb. sashimi grade tuna
2 scallions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Kewpie mayonnaise
Sriracha sauce, to taste
Oil, for deep frying
Light soy sauce
Rinse the uncooked rice several times until the water runs clear. Cook the rice in a rice cooker with a cup of water.
Combine the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Pour over the cooked rice and stir to cover each grain of rice with the mixture.
Firmly pack the rice into a musubi maker or roll it tightly into a rectangular log. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator overnight.
Dice the tuna into small pieces, and then chop finely.
Mix with the scallions, mayonnaise, and a squirt of sriracha sauce. Mix and taste. Add more sriracha sauce if you like. Set aside in the refrigerator while you fry the sushi rice.
Heat the oil for deep frying to 350°F.
Remove the sushi rice from the refrigerator and carefully cut into 1 inch cubes.
Insert a toothpick into each cube and deep fry in the oil until browned. Serve with the spicy tuna and some light soy sauce for dipping.
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