My husband went all the way to Farmer’s Market in Cubao, Quezon City two days ago to buy tuna belly and tuna panga (jaws) for grilling for yesterday’s lunch. December 12th is our wedding anniversary and we hosted a simple lunch party at home. We haven’t had enough family reunions of sorts since we moved to the suburbs and our 13th wedding anniversary seemed to be the perfect “excuse”. :) The food preparation had been going on since Friday. I cooked the chicken, tomatoes and pineapple stew and the sauce for the baked spaghetti on Friday, and the beef embutido on Saturday. A new variation for my earlier vegetable and apple salad and the grilled tuna belly were prepared an hour before lunch yesterday.
We decided not to grill the tuna panga anymore since there seemed to much food already.
For the grilled tuna belly, choose the size of tuna belly that is just right for the intended number of servings. Grilled tuna belly is best served right off the grill. It tends to get dry once it has cooled. Reheating makes it even more dry.
Before putting the tuna belly on the grill, rub it with salt all over then brush the meat with butter. If that’s too much fat for you, substitute olive oil. Then, sprinkle with lots of chopped garlic. Remember not to overcook the fish. How long it should stay on the grill depends on its size. What I do is watch the color of the meat. Once it turns opaque, I count five to seven minutes (depending on the thickness) before taking it off the grill. Actually, we had to put the tuna belly back on the grill yesterday. I miscalculated the time because it was still half frozen when it went into the grill. All’s well that ends well fortunately.
Serve it immediately with a dipping sauce made with kalamansi juice and light soy sauce, with wasabi on the side for those who wants more spice.