Grilled Marinated Previously Frozen Tuna

June 10, 2006 10 Comments

Grilled Previously Frozen Tuna Steaks

Second Life for Tuna

Ok, I’m 3 for 3 when it comes to recipes from the new cookbook, Marinades, Rubs, Brines, Cures & Glazes. I hope Jim doesn’t mind me posting another of his recipes but this one I used on some tuna turned out great. I highly recommend you check out his cookbook but don’t take my word for it.

I was thumbing through the July issue of Bon Appetit and what do I find on page 32? A great review of Jim’s new cookbook. Here’s what they say,

“We love the dogged focus, the obsession with flavor, and the sheer exhaustive nature of this barbecue book. Marinades, Rubs Brines, Cures & Glazes: 400 Recipes for Poultry, Meat, Seafood, and Vegetables by barbecue wonk Jim Tarantino delves deep into the science and practice of imbuing as much flavor as humanly possible into grilled food. And we’re not talking regional American ‘cue alone. He hits the Caribbean, North Africa, Asia, and every other corner of the globe in the recipes. This guy’s deep – mops, sops, gastriques, sugar substitutes, and flavor amplifiers with a thoroughness and enthusiasm rarely seen in a barbecue book.”

Buying and Grilling “Previously Frozen” Tuna

Normally, I wouldn’t do anything to fresh, never frozen tuna but sear the outside of it and serve it up with maybe a little wasabi & soy based sauce but this was different. I was checking out a brand new supermarket in the area and they had some “previously frozen” tuna on sale for around $8.95 per pound. It looked good and they were selling it off a big chunk of fish, not as individual tuna steaks.

So I had the fishmonger cut me off a couple of steaks and decided to try another of Jim’s marinades. I figured as long as the tuna was “previously frozen” I might be better off adding a little flavor. I looked through Marinades, Rubs, Brines, Cures & Glazes and settled on his Orange – Ginger Marinade.

I had most of the ingredients but not everything so there is a little alteration to the original but it still came out great. I also didn’t marinate this for the 2 – 4 hours Jim suggested because as usual, I was late getting dinner started. Again, it didn’t seem to matter. My wife loved it and even my 6 year old enjoyed it, although we told her it was chicken. Funny how that works so often.  Here goes:

Grilled Marinated “Previously Frozen” Tuna

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Grilled Marinated “Previously Frozen” Tuna


2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Grated zest and juice of 2 juice oranges (about 2/3 cup) - I substituted 2/3 cups of orange juice.

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger

1 teaspoon dry mustard

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

4-4 to 6oz tuna steaks

How To Prepare At Home

Start by combining the orange zest and juice with the balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, dry mustard, salt & pepper in a blender or food processor. Pulse until all the ingredients are well processed.

While the motor is running, slowly add the olive oil a little at a time. What you are doing is emulsifying the oil into the other ingredients. If you don't do it this way, the ingredients will separate.

Grill the steaks on your favorite grill to the doneness you like. Since these were not fresh, I cooked them all the way through so my girls would eat it.

Daughter Eating You can store this marinade in the refrigerator in a clean container for up to a week, or freeze it.

I only marinated the tuna for 30 - 40 minutes and it was great. Imagine how much better it would have been if I marinated for 3 hours?

I served the tuna steaks with sautéed vegetables and a couple of artichokes we adventurously ate as a family. By the end of the meal there was butter everywhere.

Once again, thank you Jim for some amazing recipes.


The time is not including marinating.

Last modified on Wed 15 July 2015 2:37 pm

Filed in: Fish Recipes

Comments (10)

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  1. selsnviu says:

    Thanks for the post.
    Great info.

  2. viereeAnaes says:


  3. Kerry O'Connell says:

    haven’t seen the site for a while, boy does it look great! I just grabbed a recipe for tonight’s tuna steaks. hope you are all fantastic!

  4. Terry says:

    Good little recipe . . . Think I will give it a try

  5. Bill Bartmann says:

    Excellent site, keep up the good work

  6. Michelle says:

    Great post, thanks!!

  7. Sara says:

    My new favorite site. Keep up the good work!!!

    Thank you Sara, you are too kind. – RG

  8. De Wayne H. says:

    Was just looking for Tuna recipe. Loved what I found. Very impressed. Ill be back.

    Thanks and look forward to seeing you. – RG

  9. Paul says:

    Actually, most tuna is previously frozen, not only including, but especially, that A grade sushi tuna. This is to get rid of parasites. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires that fish meant to be eaten raw be frozen at a temperature of -4 degrees Fahrenheit or below for at least 168 hours, or one week.

    In Japan the tuna is gutted, bled and quickly frozen whole on the boat, and that is how they go to market. Buyers judge quality by taking a core sample from the frozen fish.

    • Hi Paul, I don’t think that rule applies to tuna. I just found an interesting NY Times article that says, “Food and Drug Administration regulations stipulate that fish to be eaten raw — whether as sushi, sashimi, seviche, or tartare — must be frozen first, to kill parasites. ”I would desperately hope that all the sushi we eat is frozen,” said George Hoskin, a director of the agency’s Office of Seafood. Tuna, a deep-sea fish with exceptionally clean flesh, is the only exception to the rule.” The article also goes on to say many restaurants and stores buy it frozen “because global consumption of sushi continues to rise. Frozen fish usually costs about half as much wholesale as fresh. And some cuts, like the prized fatty toro, are not always available fresh.” I have enjoyed tuna just caught off the coast of Long Island, NY and you could really taste the difference.

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