Seared Sesame Tuna by Chef Joseph Macharia Kimani, H&S Chef Of The Month
H&S Chef Of The Month
Interview With H&S Magazine
Who Is Joseph Macharia Kimani?
I am a proud Kenyan chef who has a passion for food and a determination to learn more as well as teach more, all things related to culinary.
Type Of Cuisine?
My style of cooking is based around more of French cuisine, along with the influence of traditional Kenyan ingredients and techniques on my dishes.
What Inspired You To Become A Chef?
I always loved cooking since childhood. I helped my mother most of the time, after school to prepare meals, and since I am her only child, I had to learn how to do things around the house. I would find myself with her in the kitchen and I guess while we were cooking and chatting, I picked ideas on how to cook local foods and I got the passion from her.
What Is The Biggest Challenge You Have Faced In The Culinary Industry?
I think my biggest challenge was during the Covid-19 pandemic period, I as a chef I am always on my feet either cooking or running the kitchen but when the pandemic happened, we all had to stay at home. I hated it and I lost my mind during that period, but what was harder is that we had to slash down a team that I call family. As much as we had to let go of some staff, the bond we had together made me feel like I have lost a family member. I still talk with some, but I really miss having them close to me.
What’s Your Biggest Achievement In The Culinary Industry?
I am always happy when I go for chef competitions and get to represent myself and my country. I have competed in several of them, IFEX salon chefs competition in Belfast, Bocuse d’Or in Lyon, the heritage cuisine Master Chef in Amritsar, India and many more…
When It comes To Cooking What Is More Important To You The Technique, The Ingredients Or The Creativity?
I would say creativity and proper ingredients makes a great chef, technique you pick up as you keep cooking.
Recipe Of The Week: Seared Sesame Tuna
• 3 Tbsp white sesame seeds
• 3 Tbsp black sesame seeds
• 1 Tbsp finely grated lime zest
• 1 Tbsp minced lemongrass (tender inner part only)
• 1 tsp sweet paprika
• 1 tsp Aleppo pepper flakes or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
• 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
• 1 tsp kosher salt
• Six 10-ounce tuna steaks, cut 1/2 inch thick
• ¼ cup vegetable oil, plus more for brushing
• Lime wedges and mayonnaise, for serving
In a small bowl, combine the white and black sesame seeds with the lime zest, lemongrass, paprika, Aleppo pepper, black pepper and salt. Lightly brush the tuna with oil and sprinkle the sesame mixture all over it, pressing to help the crust adhere. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in each of 2 large nonstick skillets until the oil is almost smoking. Add the crusted tuna steaks and cook them over moderately high heat until they are slightly pink in the center, about 2 minutes per side.
Dressing The Plate
Transfer the crusted tuna steaks to plates and serve them with lime wedges and mayonnaise.