Every summer we bbq like crazy in the Hamptons. You know how that stupid Sonja on Real Housewives of New York wants to do a recipe book based on her toaster oven? We could do that with the bbq. The great thing about bbq’ing though, is that you don’t have a lot of added fat. No added butter or what have you for taste. It’s the taste of the grill that’s great, and it’s so easy and gets everyone outside.
One crowd pleaser that I can not get enough of is my sister’s tuna burgers. They are so delicious and fresh, and are such a healthier option than hamburgers. Don’t be intimidated by the long list here, or the length of the recipe. It’s really much easier than it looks, and once you master these bad boys you’ll be the pimp of the grill all summer long.
Heidi’s World Famous Best In the Universe Tuna Burgers Recipe (makes about 4-6 burgers)
You will need:
For the patties:
- 1 Pound of fresh Ahi tuna (make sure it’s bright and red and super fresh)
- 1 Lemon
- 1 Bunch of cilantro
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Old Bay seasoning
- Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Vidalia sweet onion
- 2-3 tablespoons capers
For the garnish:
You can garnish your burger however you want. We’ve done our tuna burgers with avocado, diced jalapeños, or whatever you think is yummy. In general though, we always use this, if you want to follow suit.
For the garnish:
- 1 Iceberg lettuce head (use about half, chop that crunchy joy up)
- 2 Tomatoes on the vine thinly sliced with lots of salt and pepper
- Thousand Island
- BRIOCHE BUNS (I’m putting that in caps, because while you can use a regular hamburger bun or any bread product, I really think the brioche buns puts this over the top in the delicious meter)
Preheat bbq to 425 degrees. (You want it nice and hot to get a good seer on the outside-but watch those suckers because they can really over cook at that temp too.)
Cut tuna into 4 pieces using a sharp chefs knife. Wash your cilantro and set aside.
Take 1/2 of your Vidalia onion and put in food processor and chop so it’s nice and finely diced. Set aside. (You can use left over onion as garnish on burger.)
Take about 10-15 leaves of cilantro and put into food processor until finely diced as well, then set aside.
Take your 4 pieces of tuna and place in food processor with chop blade as setting.
Add two pinches of sea salt, 4 nice big grinds of pepper, 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce, two shakes of Old Bay seasoning, 3 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon of grated lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of grated onion, 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh cilantro, 2 tablespoons of capers, throw all that in your food processor with the tuna. Then put lid on food processor and pulse it 10-12 times until it resembles tuna tartar. (Don’t grind it too finely, you still want it to have a bit of chunk.)
Take a cookie sheet and line with tin foil. Over the tin foil drizzle about 2 tablespoons of EVOO. Put the olive oil on palm of hands and take tuna and measure about 3/4 cup of tuna and form patties to desired burger size. (The EVOO on your hands will make it so the tuna doesn’t stick to you.) Place each side of burger patty on cookie sheet so each side is coated in a bit of EVOO, this way it won’t stick to your bbq.
Sprinkle each patty with a bit of Old Bay seasoning and salt and pepper.
Place patties on bbq. (Be careful with these suckers as they can fall apart and it sucks when they fall through the grates.)
Turn timer on for 3 minutes at 425 degrees.
While cooking patties cut brioche buns in half, and cut your veg garnish for burgers.
Flip your burger at 3 minutes to other side (again, careful careful.) Place brioche buns on bbq to toast. (You don’t have to toast your buns, but I think they are scrumptious when they have that extra crisp crunch.)
After cooking patty on each side for three minutes , take off and let the tuna rest. (You can always cook for less time if you want it more on the raw side.)
Garnish your bun as you would see fit, grab that tuna and put in burger bun of joy. How yummy is that?
See how nice and red?
- Four pieces, cilantro and onions.
Tuna tartar from food processor.
Cooked patties off bbq.
Final product, Heidi’s World Famous, Best In the Universe Tuna Burger.
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