Grilled Tuna with Miso Shallot Caramel

Miso, Japanese bean paste, comes in many varieties, usually identified by color. Any color may be used, and the miso may be omitted, if unavailable.

  • Servings: 14
Grilled Tuna with Miso Shallot Caramel

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 1999


  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 large shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon miso
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 whole star anise
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup Marsala wine
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • 3 pounds tuna steaks, cut into 6 steaks, each 1 inch thick
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. To make the miso-shallot caramel, place sugar and about 2 tablespoons water in a small saucepan, and cook over medium-high heat until sugar is dissolved and turns amber in color, between 10 and 12 minutes.

  2. Add shallots, and toss to coat. Cook, stirring until caramel is liquid again, 1 to 2 minutes. Add miso, soy sauce, star anise, Worcestershire sauce, and Marsala wine; stir to combine. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until syrupy, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat, and discard anise.

  3. Transfer the mixture to the jar of a blender. Puree until smooth, about 5 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed. Transfer to a bowl; set aside.

  4. Place sesame seeds in a small saute pan set over medium heat, and toast until seeds are golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside to cool.

  5. Heat a grill or grill pan until very hot. Season the tuna steaks with salt and pepper. Place tuna steaks on hot grill, and cook until browned, about 2 minutes. Turn over, and continue cooking 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer tuna steaks to a large cutting board; immediately brush tops with the reserved miso caramel.

  6. Slice each tuna steak diagonally into 3 pieces. Garnish with the reserved toasted sesame seeds, and serve.


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