Knowledge is power, certainly, but knowledge can also stymie you at the fish counter at Whole Foods. I used to feel really proud when I bought fish. I'm fortifying my body with omega-3s! I'm eating the good fats! I'm introducing my kids to a healthier form of protein!
But with overfishing and polluted waters and fish farms and trying to eat more locally, I find myself anxious. There are oodles of resources out there for those who want to take the time to educate themselves, and I've made use of some of them. I really should put another Seafood Watch Guide in my wallet. I had one until about a month ago, but then I cleaned out my wallet and must have tossed it.
Never, ever clean out your wallet.
When I bought the tuna, I should have thoroughly grilled the man at the fish counter. Part of me figured, 'It's Whole Foods, so it has to be environmentally friendly, right?' I mean, right? It's Whole Foods! But according to the well-reputed blog Chews Wise, Greenpeace gave all the supermarkets whose fish programs it analyzed a failing rating. Even Whole Foods.
Here's what I found out about the tuna, after the fact: looks like it was either a) the best choice; b) a good choice; or c) something to avoid, depending on how (troll? pole? handline? longline?) and where (Atlantic? Hawaii? Worldwide?) it was caught.
So I either got an A+, a B, or an F.
I feel kind of bad saying this without knowing if I acted responsibly, but it still tasted really good.
Recipe for Grilled Ahi with Yellow Tomato and Avocado Relish
3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
3/4 to 1 pound wild ahi tuna steak ("searing grade") (about 1" thick)
coarse salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 avocado, diced
2 teaspoons lime juice
1/2 large yellow heirloom tomato, diced
1-1/2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
1/2 teaspoon minced jalapeno, or more to taste, optional
Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
Massage 2 teaspoons of olive oil into tuna. Season generously with salt and pepper.
When grill is very hot, lay tuna on well-oiled grates. Sear for about 6 minutes over direct heat: 2 minutes on the first side, then 2 on the flip side, then 2 on the first side again to get cross-hatch grill marks, if this is important to you. Watch the side of the fish very carefully. It's done when you can still see a bright band of red along the center. (Grill more or less according to your preferred degree of doneness, but 6 minutes still leaves a nice rare center.)
In a small bowl, mix together the avocado, lime juice, tomato, onion, and jalapeno, if using. Sprinkle with coarse salt, additional pepper, and the remaining teaspoon of olive oil.
Slice tuna. Serve with relish.