Tuna Tataki (キハダ鮪のたたき) is a yellowfin/ahi tuna lightly seared and serve rare with citrus base soy sauce. It’s very easy and quick to prepare, and it is a light yet flavorful appetizer to start a meal.

Tuna Tataki - Mix It
Tuna Tataki – Mix It in Cambridge, MA

You may wonder what “tataki (たたき)” means. Literal translation of tataki is “pounded” in Japanese which doesn’t really anything have to do with searing. There are a few theories for the origin of name based on different ways of preparing fish (or meat) in Japanese cuisine.

The first one is when you lightly sear the fish over a hot flame or in a pan and briefly marinate in the citrus based sauce, you would gently “pound” the fish with fingers with marinade.

The other theory says the word comes from the pounding of the fish with knife when you sprinkle salt on the fish prior to cooking, or pounding the fish with grated ginger or green onions to enhance the flavor.

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