The Dish: Soy Glazed Tuna
with Wasabi Mayo
Apr 04, 2014 10:38AM ● Published by Cate Reynolds
Mother’s Peninsula Grille
969 Ritchie Highway, Arnold
Sometimes, brothers can fight and argue with the best of them. Other times, they team up to make magic. Such is the case with Dave and Adam Rather. The Rather brothers, president/chef and owner, respectively, of Mother’s Peninsula Grille (and of Mother’s Federal Hill) have opened a restaurant with a fun, friendly atmosphere and out-of-this-world food. They share their thoughts on good food, as well as their recipe for Soy Glazed Tuna with Wasabi Mayo.
How did you get started in the restaurant business?
Adam Rather: I started working in restaurants at age 14. First, I worked as a dishwasher, then at Roy Rogers, cooking chicken. I also worked at Angelina’s Italian Restaurant in Bowie. It wasn’t until I moved to St. John, in the Virgin Islands that I started cooking professionally.
Dave Rather: I got started managing a restaurant in Baltimore in 1996. I have always felt comfortable entertaining and socializing. I realized quickly that I’d found my calling and started looking for my own location.
What do you consider more important: local or organic?
AR: I think both are important. Buying local stimulates the local economy and represents the regional products. I also believe that eating foods free of pesticides, hormones, and steroids is something that we should all be doing. Hopefully, in the future, organic foods will become more abundant and, in turn, become more affordable. I would love to use more organic products in my cooking but they aren’t cost effective.
What are some culinary trends that you’ve noticed?
AR: Food trucks, bacon and pork bellies, ethnic foods, healthier foods, and smoking foods.
DR: The trends I’ve notice are bacon-inspired dishes, mac and cheese combinations, and gourmet hot dogs.
What is the most important kitchen too?
AR: I’d say my tongue is the most important tool in the kitchen.
DR: My brother’s answer of the tongue is perfect. The taste buds tell you everything. It is important, with two locations, to make sure both restaurants are consistent on our dishes.
How did this dish originate?
AR: Our Soy Glazed Tuna with Wasabi Mayo was borrowed from Chef Aaron Willis of the Fish Trap restaurant in St. John. He borrowed it from his time cooking in California. It’s an example of California fusion.
What wine or drink pairs best?
AR: I think a nice light and crisp white wine would go well with the tuna, although I did have a great sparkling sake the other night that might go better.
What is the most important step when cooking it?
AR: The most important step in the preparation of the tuna is cooking the fish to your desired temperature. Also, adding the corn starch slurry to the soy glaze is important. Not enough slurry and your glaze is runny; too much and the glaze turns gelatinous.
Soy Glazed Tuna with Wasabi Mayo
8 ounce tuna steak
1 3/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 3/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup fresh ginger, chopped finely.
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp. wasabi powder
1 cup mayo
To prepare glaze, combine all ingredients in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Add a cornstarch water slurry, a bit at a time, until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
To prepare mayo, mix wasabi powder with enough water to make a smooth paste. Add the paste to the mayo to combine.
Salt and pepper one 8-ounce tuna steak per person served. Grill or pan sear to desired temperature. Glaze the cooked tuna with one or two ounces of soy glaze. Apply mayo in a squeeze bottle, in a zigzag fashion. Then, in a perpendicular motion, drag a toothpick across mayo in another zigzag fashion.