Anyone who knows me can tell you that I love sauces, and there aren’t many foods around that I won’t splash a sauce of some sort on. Of course, when most people think of a sauce, they think of the butter and cream enriched sauces that form the backbone of classic sauce making – and yes, those sauces are amazing. But although it would be nice to live in a world where everything came with a side of bernaise, there are other ways to get the pleasure of a tasty sauce without using any fat at all – like the savory balsamic glaze we made tonight to coat a couple of pan-seared tuna steaks. In addition to our fish, we’ve also made a simple roasted cauliflower; and if you’ve never tried it this way (or don’t like cauliflower), I urge you to give this a go.
To make the roasted cauliflower, cut up an entire head into pieces. You don’t have to make the pieces tiny; in fact, I rather like keeping them large. Toss the cauliflower pieces in a mixing bowl with salt and olive oil until coated. I think a good olive oil really is important here, and since Jess and I really like olive oils with a bit of a sweeter, fruitier flavor, I’ve been using a blended oil from California Olive Ranch called Miller’s Blend. It’s only around $9 a bottle and tastes as good as oils twice the price. Once you’ve gotten your cauliflower good and coated, spread the pieces out onto a cookie sheet. You want to be sure not to crowd the pieces, because crowding will cause the florets to steam rather than roast. Roast them in a very hot oven (around 400 degrees) for 25 minutes until they turn golden and have a few brown spots on them. Cauliflower cooked this way will have a sweet, nutty flavor that is completely different than the item steamed or boiled. While that’s cooking, let’s get our fish ready.
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup shrimp or chicken broth
- 1/2 teaspoon corn starch
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine all these ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook for a minute or two over medium heat until the glaze has reached your desired thickness. Adjust salt and pepper as needed, and if you really want a luscious hit of velvety-smooth deliciousness, take the pan from the heat when it has thickened and whisk in a tablespoon of butter. The sauce stands up for itself nicely without this step, though, so it’s your decision. Serve over tuna steaks that you’ve grilled, broiled, or pan-seared for about 3 minutes on either side for medium-rare. Enjoy!