I first enjoyed seared ahi on hot rocks way back in 2008 at Baleen Restaurant located inside the Portofino Hotel & Marina in Redondo Beach. This dish was a definite show stopper, and of course I just had to try it at home!
In short, guests cooked their own sushi to their liking using nothing but piping hot rocks and a pair of chopsticks. It made an impressive presentation, and was so much fun to cook our food tableside.
The key to this seared ahi recipe is to use freshly washed and sanitized river rocks. It goes without saying that you should use extreme caution when handling them for service. This is not a recipe for the faint of heart, and should not be attempted by children, or anyone but an experienced adult.
Serve your seared ahi dish alongside a soy dipping sauce (made with my garlic shallot puree) for a fun and entertaining appetizer that is sure to impress!
This recipe also works well with thin slices of steak or scallops. Hope you enjoy it!
Seared Ahi on Hot Rocks
- 8 oz. ahi steak
- 2 washed and thoroughly dried river rocks
- Rock or ice cream sea salt as needed
Asian Dipping Sauce
- 1 cup hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger or garlic-shallot puree
- 1 tablespoon pineapple juice
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce or Chinese chili paste
- 2 tablespoons honey
- Prepare the Asian dipping sauce by mixing all ingredients together and setting aside until ready to serve.
- Preheat two washed and thoroughly dried river rocks on your grill over high heat for one hour. (Note of caution — only use very dry rocks when preparing this dish or they could explode.)
- Next, fill a heat-resistant bowl with rock or ice cream sea salt.
- With a sharp knife, slice the tuna into thin slices, going against the grain.
- Carefully remove rocks from the grill. Set the pan on a hot pad or towel. Carefully place the hot stones into the salt rock.
- When serving your guests, be sure to put a hot pad under the bowl and remind your guests not to touch the rock.
- Place sliced ahi on top of the rock and cook to your desired doneness. The rocks will keep their heat for about 15-20 minutes, allowing enough time to enjoy this quick and easy appetizer.