Chef Elena Arzak's Simple Rule For Cooking Tuna

Elena Arzak knows a thing or two about fine food and cooking. Arzak is not only the chef of a three Michelin-starred restaurant, but in 2012 she won the Veuve Clicquot World's Best Female Chef. Arzak was born to be in the restaurant industry. Her father, Juan Mari Arzak, worked in his family's fine dining establishment. Even though Arzak was encouraged not to join the family business or restaurant industry as a whole, she couldn't help but fall in love with the art. After attending school and working in some of Europe's best restaurants, she returned home to work alongside her father (per Fine Dining Lovers).

Restaurante Arzak celebrates Basque cuisine and Basque ingredients while creating modern gastronomic experiences. She describes the restaurant's fare as "singular, Basque, evolving, research-based and avant-garde (via Fine Dining Lovers)." Arzak loves working with fish, especially hake. According to Good Food, seafood is one of the cornerstones of Basque cooking, with anchovies, tuna, and squid being front and center, depending on the season.

Arzak has a few seafood dishes on her menu that garner attention, but her tuna and rhubarb dish stands out from the rest.

Leave the skin on while cooking

Elena Arzak appeared on the Youtube channel, Staff Canteen, to showcase her white tuna and rhubarb dish. Though many home cooks will not attempt to recreate this dish at home, Arzak has a simple tip for cooks wanting to cook tuna. She says it's best to leave the skin on the fish until the end because the skin adheres to the fatty layers, keeping the flavors and juices inside (per Fine Dining Lovers).

Arzak's tuna dish involves a three-step process. First, the fish is salted; second, the fish is seared; then, lastly, it is grilled in a pan. In the video, Arzak removes the skin right before grilling the fish. She then coats it in a mojo sauce before serving it with the garnishes. Arzak pairs the fish with rhubarb, onion, and fresh edible flowers for a stunning presentation.

For those who want to experience the masterpiece firsthand, the restaurant is located in San Sebastian, Spain, and reservations can be made on its website.