Firm, meaty, yellowfin tuna steaks can intimidate novice cooks, but this high-quality tuna is easy to prepare. The mildly sweet flesh of yellowfin tuna, also known as ahi tuna, is often served raw in Japanese sashimi. You can pan-sear the outside of the fish briefly in a hot saucepan, leaving a slightly crisp crust on the outside, keeping the inside rare to medium-rare. Serve the tuna steaks thinly sliced to enjoy on top of a salad or on their own with a dipping sauce, like a soy ginger or spicy mayonnaise sauce.
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Season the tuna steaks lightly with salt and pepper. Sprinkle additional spices to your taste on them, such as coriander, chili powder, garlic powder or crushed red peppers.
Coat a saucepan with olive oil and bring it to a medium-high heat on the stovetop.
Add the tuna steaks to the pan once the oil is fully heated and sear for about 2 to 4 minutes per side. Tuna steaks typically are between 1- to 1 1/2-inches thick. Searing the steaks for 2 to 4 minutes leaves the steaks done to rare or medium-rare. For more well-done steaks, add a few more minutes per side, but lower the heat slightly to avoid over-browning the outside.
Remove the tuna steaks from the pan and place them on a clean cutting board. Slice the steaks into 1-inch thick strips to serve.