Soy sauce, sesame oil, scallion, garlic, dried chiles—these traditional Korean flavorings, combined with chicken stock, make an intense and delicious sauce for the tuna. Sautéed spinach or broccoli rabe tossed with a touch of soy sauce and a sprinkling of sesame seeds would be a delicious accompaniment
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon dried red-pepper flakes
1/2 cup canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
4 tuna steaks, about 1 inch thick (about 2 pounds in all)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
1 scallion including green top, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, sugar, red-pepper flakes, and broth. Sprinkle the fish with the salt and black pepper. Heat the cooking oil in a large frying pan over moderately high heat. Add the tuna and cook until brown, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook the fish until done to your taste, 3 to 4 minutes longer for medium rare.
Reduce the heat to moderately low and put the sesame oil in the pan. Stir in the scallion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the soy-sauce mixture; simmer until reduced to approximately 1/3 cup, about 2 minutes. Cut the tuna into slices and serve with the sauce.
An aromatic white wine with just a touch of residual sweetness will buffer the spiciness of this dish and balance the saltiness from the soy sauce. Try a luscious Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand or California.