I went to Sicily a looooong time ago, when I was 16. I let you to calculate how many years ago… No, I am not going to tell you my age…. 🙂
It was the first time I took the plane, it was when you could still smoke in air plane, can you believe it ? Yes… that long ago…
Two rows on the plane, one for smokers, the other one for non-smokers. Being on the non-smokers side didn’t change anything and the smell was terrible.
I have a lot of vivid memories about Sicily. It’s dark, it’s the very deep Italy, authentic, people with dark skin, dark hair, the small, old and beautiful ‘mamma’ sitting on a chair in the street in front of her door.
Greek, French, Spanish and Arab influences that you can feel in their amazing food.
Citrus, nutmeg, apricots, melons are common ingredients and dishes like Maccu (the soup), Spaghetti ai rici (with sea urcin), cannoli, cassata siciliana as dessert….. are famous in the world.
One of the ingredients that Sicilian use is capers.
I made this tuna carpaccio, I soaked some capers to reduce the saltiness, added a few herbs and lemon and it was divine.
Tuna carpaccio, Sicilian way, serves 2
- 2 tbsp of capers
- 4 tbsp of water
- 1 red chilli
- 200 g / 7.05 oz yellowfin tuna steak, sustainably sourced
- 1 lemon
- 1 small clove of garlic
- Extra virgin olive oil
- ½ bunch of fresh basil
- ½ bunch of fresh dill
- Rocket for the serving
- A few cherry tomatoes for the colour
Leave the capers to soak for around 10min in water.
Meanwhile, hold the chilli over a direct flame on the hob for around 5 minutes, or until blackened and blistered all over, turning occasionally. Transfer to a bowl, cover with cling film and leave to cool for around 10 minutes.
With a good sharp knife, slice the tuna thinly against the grain. Put on a plate and squeeze over the juice from half the lemon.
Wash and chop the basil, finely chop the dill, then peel and finely chop the garlic. Drain and chop the capers, then add the chopped ingredients to a bowl with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Scrape off the skin from the cooled chilli. Cut it in half,, deseed and finely chop most of it, then add the chopped chilli to the bowl, reserving the rest to one side. Stir well to combine.
On a serving plate, arrange the tuna, drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil, then spoon over the herb paste. Finely slice the reserved chilli lengthways and arrange on top, add a few tomatoes, slicec, then serve with dressed rocket and lemon wedges.