This recipe is a winner if you love tuna in combination with Asian flavors. The sweetness of the pickled ginger is so delicious in this dish.  You can buy it in most markets or anywhere they are selling sushi rolls.  Regular ginger works as well, but the pickled ginger really works well in combination with the heat. The black rice is incredibly healthy and a nice visual contrast in color to the tuna.   I love to serve this as a nice stack, it is a bit more effort when putting the meal together, but if you invest in a ring mold with a press, it makes it quite easy and offers an impressive presentation.  There are many different sizes available, but 5 inches is perfect for this dish.  A simple sauce to finish the dish with delicious mango cucumber salsa pulls the whole meal together beautifully.

Serves 4

for tuna burgers:

  • 1 lb fresh tuna steaks
  • 1 small jalapeño, minced
  • 2 stalks celery, fine dice
  • 1/4 cup red onion, fine dice
  • 1/2 carrot, fine dice
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons pickled ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 -3 teaspoons chili garlic sauce, adjust for heat preference
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons mayonaise
  • 1 tablespoon spicy mustard
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • freshly cracked pepper

for black rice:

  • 1 cup black rice
  • 1 cup shelled edamame
  • 1 cup diced red pepper, 1/4 cup reserved for garnish
  • 1 small onion, finely minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil

for mango cucumber salsa:

  • 2 mangos, 1/2 inch dice
  • 2 small persian cucumbers, 1/2 inch dice
  • 1/2 jalapeno, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey

for mustard soy sauce:

  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon chili garlic paste, for heat


prep tuna burgers:  In a medium skillet, heat the sesame oil to medium heat and add all vegetables and seasonings to the skillet, stirring frequently until juices release and vegetables are no longer raw (3-5 minutes).  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.  In a small bowl, whisk mustard, egg and mayonnaise until well combined.  Cut tuna into chunks, and place in food processor and pulse about 10 times, breaking tuna into smaller pieces but with some pieces still in tact.  Transfer tuna to a mixing bowl and add in sautéed mix-ins along with egg mixture.  Using your hands, combine well, so all ingredients are well distributed.  Line a baking sheet with parchment, and divide tuna into 4 equal amounts and place 1/4 of mixture at a time into press to compact and create a neat tidy burger using a 5 inch ring mold, if possible.  Place patties on parchment, cover loosely and place in fridge for at least an hour.

for rice: In a small saucepan, heat coconut oil on medium , add onion and garlic and saute for 2 minutes until aromatic.  Turn heat to high and add rice stirring constantly for an additional 2 minutes.  Add stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer and cover allowing to simmer for about 40 minutes.  Add edamame  and 3/4 of red pepper during last 5 minutes of cooking and replace cover.  Remove from heat and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes.

for mango cucumber salsa:  Toss mango, jalapeño, cilantro and cucumber together in a small bowl.  Stir together remaining ingredients and toss into mango combination.

for mustard soy sauce:  Whisk all ingredients in a measuring cup until smooth and well incorporated, adjusting for sweet and heat preferences if necessary.

cook burgers and assemble dish:  Remove burgers from fridge and pat dry if needed with paper towel.  Heat a heavy bottom skillet with canola oil to medium-high, and sear burgers for about 2-3 minutes a side for medium-well (more or less for a more well done burger or rare burger respectively).  Remove from heat.  Fluff the rice to incorporate red pepper and edamame.  On each plate, press 1/4 of rice mixture in ring mold, centered on the middle of your plate and compact well and remove mold.   Align tuna burger on top to create a stack.  Then add mango-cucumber salsa on top, with some on the side as well. Drizzle a little sauce around the  circumference of stack and more on top if desired.  Garnish with reserved cilantro and diced red pepper.  Repeat the process on each plate.  Serve immediately and enjoy!