March 3, 2009

tuna pomegranate & roasted garlic wraps

On Saturday we had a little breath of spring here in Queens. On Wednesday the puddles along the gutters looked like spills of iced coffee. Thursday the weather was slightly above freezing, Friday it was downright balmy, but it rained in the evening. Saturday dawned bright and clear, with a nip in the air but the promise of actual warmth from the sun.

This close to the end of winter, our stores were running low. The Trainer used the last of the walnuts and pecans on his oatmeal and after making bread and test running a few recipes I could see the bottom of the proverbial barrel of my dried fruit stores.

A trip to Trader Joe's was in order, and in this weather we decided to take the bikes. I'm always fascinated as we pedal through cross-sections of ethnic neighborhoods. On a Saturday afternoon we see Latin people strutting along Roosevelt avenue. There are so many Italian restaurants along one section of Queens Boulevard that it smells perpetually of pizza and tomato sauce. As we push up the hill barely pass Jewish families walking home from Temple, the women in long skirts and kerchiefs over their hair. Here all the restaurants are glatt Kosher and the signs read in Russian. When the signs shift to Greek we turn onto Whitestone Boulevard for the final push to the store.

We loaded up on nuts, nut butters, dried fruit, mesquite honey and just a few other necessaries. With more than 20 pounds of food split between two packs we step out to unlock the bikes to discover that winter was back. By the time we got home I wasn't feeling my toes and my hands were stiff around my handle bars. Just once it would be nice for the ride home to be the easier one.

After putting the bikes back in the basement and filling the cupboards with our haul I was famished. I wanted protein after a trip like that and I just happened to have a brand new can of Trader Joe's tuna, packed in water with no soy or anything. I had some kind of inspiration and threw together a quick wrap, which was so filling and unexpectedly delicious that I got the ingredients and made a prettier version tonight.
Tuna Pomegranate & Roasted Garlic Wrap
2-3 large leaves of lettuce
1 can tuna, drained
6-9 cloves roasted garlic
1-2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses

Was and dry your lettuce. Smush garlic along the length of the rid of one lettuce leaf. Spread the tuna on top of the garlic. Drizzle pomegranate molasses along the tuna and salt to taste. Fold lettuce and wrap with the other leaves.

Tuna Pomegranate & Roasted Garlic Hor Devoures
1 tuna steak
roasted garlic
pomegranate molasses
lettuce, cut into ribbons
fleur de sel
olive oil

Pour a little but of oil into a skillet and heat until it's very hot. Sear the tuna steak, no more than 2 minutes on each side. Remove to a cutting board and slice into 1 1/2inch wide strips. Sear the fresh sides of the tuna. When the tuna is cool enough to handle, cut into 1/4inch thick slices. top each slice with a smear of pomegranate molasses, one clove of roasted garlic and wrap with a ribbon of lettuce. Arrange on a plate and sprinkle with fleur de sel and serve warm or cold.


Kelly said...

I'm sure the tuna was delicious, but I just loved hearing about the weather. You painted such a vivid picture. And then the bike ride, through all the different neighborhoods. I could imagine it so clearly. What a nice way to wake up this morning! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I like reading your story too, very intriguing! We walk to the store a lot too. We like to take Sophie's wagon so we can load it with groceries and stuff. I am looking forward to Spring. We are having some more winter weather right now though.

Vittoria said...

I try to write things in an engaging way, the way I experience them. I just love how all the little ethnic neighborhoods fit together in Queens.

The weather here is getting nicer, right now it reminds me of late winter/early spring in the high dessert.