This is definitely one of the best ways to enjoy your tuna. No wonder I can no longer remember how many times I’ve prepared this dish for family and friends. This would be the first time I’ll be doing this in the slow cooker, and to be completely honest, I did enjoy the results from this take much better than those from my stove top versions.
So let’s get started. Get the freshest tuna loin you can find, or all seafood in general, always. Otherwise, save the seafood dish for another day.
You wouldn’t want to eat your tuna all cooked through and tough would you? You’ll want it slightly rare and still pink in the center, so you’ll have to “undercook” it a bit. So getting the best tuna would be your only assurance that it’s free from any parasites.
Finding tuna should not be difficult at all. It most probably is available all-year in the frozen section of any grocery or better yet get it freshly-caught at seafood markets. Recognizing fresh ones should be all so easy too – it should be firm and pink.
Cut your tuna into small chunks as you see in this photo. Go larger or smaller, that’ll be all up to your personal preference. The only reminder I could give is to cut them uniformly so they’ll cook to the same doneness.
Next would be to get all your flavoring components ready. Well, a classic salpicao should at least have these key ingredients: olive oil, garlic, and chili. Adding anything else would totally be fine too.
Okay, so I have my olive oil and garlic. As for the chili, I used a combination of bell peppers, green jalapenos, and red Thai chilis so I get less heat without giving up any of that peppery flavor. I had to do so ’cause some kids will be coming over for dinner.
Here’s where cooking a salpicao in a slow cooker beats its stovetop counterpart. These aromatics get to release more flavor by cooking them low and slow in a crockpot as opposed to sauteeing them briefly in a skillet. It’s actually more of like creating an infused olive oil for our tuna to cook in.
I haven’t tried doing this on a high heat setting, but leaving those aromatics for 4 hours on low won’t get them scorching at all.
Before you get the tuna in, switch your cooker on high. You’ll want the chunks of fish to cook as quick as possible so their core stays pink and juicy. For this same reason, try to get them into the pot fast, taking the lid off for a very brief time so as not to let too much heat escape.
For the size of the cuts I’ve made, all I needed was 10 minutes. You may need very slightly more time if you’d chopped yours bigger.
As soon as the tuna’s perfectly cooked, serve it immediately. Aside from the fact that it’s better to eat while hot, leaving it in the pot even for a couple more minutes would get it overcooked in all the residual heat.