Coffee between sweet and salty – Giovanni Santoro

In Sicily, it works like this: you grow up between grandma’s stove and Sunday sauces. The smells and scents of those dishes are kept in one’s heart and memory, and then turn into passion and source of inspiration. This is what happened to Giovanni Santoro, young star chef of the Shalai Resort in Linguaglossa, on the slopes of Mount Etna. In fact, his cooking is inspired by the abundance the local area has to offer and masterfully measures the concept of seasonality, which allows him to prepare excellent products at any time of the year, combined with creativeness. His dishes seem to say “the palate always needs to be caressed and never skewed”. This is exactly what we felt while tasting a fresh bluefin tuna marinated with coffee.

Bluefin tuna from the Mediterranean marinated with coffee

Ingredients for two people. For the coffee-marinated tuna: salt 50 g, cane sugar 50 g, Moak coffee powder 50 g, bluefin tuna 400 g. For the onion chutney: red onions 300 g, cane sugar 50 g, star anice10 g, half glass of red wine vinegar. For the salty crumble crust: soft wheat flour 200 g, butter 50 g, yolks 3, milk 50 g, coffee powder 20 g. For the moka sauce: yolks 6, cream 200 g, coffee powder 50 g.


for the marinated tuna: mix all ingredients by massaging the tuna carefully, then leave to rest for 20 minutes. Lightly cook in a non-stick pan until you obtain an even crust on the outside. (2) for the onion chutney: julienne the red onions and flavour with cane sugar and star anise, cook over a low heat. Simmer with red wine vinegar until reduced. (3) for the crumble: mix flour, soft butter and coffee powder in a kitchen machine with the help of a K-beater. Then add yolks and milk until the mixture is smooth. Leave to rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes and bake in the oven for about 1o minutes at a temperature of 185°. Crumble it as soon as it is cold. (4) for the moka sauce: heat the cream to 60° in a pan. Then add yolks and coffee powder (that were previously beaten). Simmer until you get a crème anglaise.

Dish composition

Pour the coffee sauce onto the middle of the plate, put the seared tuna escalopes on it and garnish with regular shape adding the coffee crumble and onion chutney.