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"To read a book about a country's cuisine isn't simply to go looking for 'good things'; it is also to better know - by means of the recipes - the customs and the richness or poverty of a place, and the spirit of those who inhabit it. It is above all, to participate in the symbolic celebration of the shared repast."

~ Ginette Olivesi-Lorenzi, La Cuisine Mentonnaise



Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking

Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking (The Savoring Series)
by Lori De Mori

Part of the Savoring Series, which is one of my favorite series of books about Regional Cuisine, Savoring Tuscany is a beautiful book filled with sumptuous recipes and delectable writing about the cuisine and culture of Tuscany. As with all the books in the series, Savoring Tuscany is put together beautifully and all of the recipes are well written and presented. The recipes that we tested were all superb and the book is an excellent source for fans of Tuscan cuisine.


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Recipe - Cajun Style Tuna Stir Fry
by Wen Zientek-Sico

This recipe is quick and easy to prepare and is just brimming with authentic Cajun flavor.

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Cajun Style Tuna Stir Fry

This is one of my absolute favorite ways to cook fresh tuna steaks. The mixture of spices in this dish will be sure to bring the family running. The dish is reasonably spicy, but is not so hot to turn off those that can not tolerate a lot of spice. Of course, if you prefer really hot food, adjust the amount of chili powder to taste. I normally use a blend of Cajun spices that I keep premixed in the spice cabinet, but you can use those listed below for similar results, or experiment with your favorite Cajun spice mixture. This spicy tuna is nicely balanced by rice and beans or a simple rice pilaf. I also like to serve it with barley or orzo for a quick cooking, but less traditional side dish.

1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon crumbled dried thyme
48 ounces tuna steaks, cut into chunks
5 minced garlic cloves
1 small minced onion
6 sliced scallions

In a small bowl mix together the oil, orange juice, vinegar, and honey until well blended. In a large shallow dish or pie plate mix together the spices. Dip each piece into the oil mixture and then roll in the spice mixture. Repeat until all of the tuna is coated. Heat the wok over medium high heat until warm. Add the tuna and any leftover spices to the wok, and cook for four minutes, or until firm and cooked through. Place the tuna on a serving plate. Pour the remaining orange juice mixture into the wok and stir to remove anything stuck to the surface of the wok. Add the garlic, onion, and green onions. Stir-fry for one to two minutes, or until the garlic is fragrant but not browned. Pour the sauce over the tuna and serve hot.

Makes 6 servings.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes