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Uses for Canned Tuna


Chris Hennes
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Broadly, Albacore / Bonito is the same as Japan's Katsuo; also called skipjack tuna. Hie thee to Fishbase's search page.

As with a lot of fish, the common / market names overlap and cover a bewildering variety of species. Here is the page for Thunnus Alalunga and here are its common names round the world (clicking the common names link towards the bottom of the species page).

True Katsuo is the Katsuwonus Pelamis that also appears in the common mames list above. It looks different but is similar eating - its own common names page is here and you can see it appears widely in the English-speaking world as Bonito.

If the link works out, here's a search for fish with a common name including tuna. 13 pages. Yikes. Katie Meadow, both "a small type of tuna" and "a small fish like tuna" seem right to me. In the markets you don't typically see katsuo much bigger than 40cm or 50cm, a foot and a half or so. Bigeye, yellowfin and of course (true maguro) bluefin tuna are the big ones, or some of them at least.

Edited by Blether (log)

QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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Basically what Janeer said above but without mashing. This recipe for tonno e fagioli is from Marcella Hazan's Italian Cooking. Half a red onion, finely sliced soaked in water for half an hour, change water a few times during this period. Drain and add the contents of one 440g can cannellini beans. Use a good quality smallish can of tuna in olive oil, around 150g. Flake the tuna and add it to the salad. Use additional olive oil and balsamic to dress and season with pepper and salt (be light handed with the salt because the canned tuna will already be salted). Ideal as a brunch dish or as a light salad.

And what about vitello e tonnato, which is an Italian dish with veal smothered with a canned tuna sauce? Here's a recipe from the NY Times.

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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Thanks, Blether. According to Wiki, Bonito is typically smaller than Albacore by about three or four feet. So true Bonito (aka Katsuo or Skipjack) is a smaller type of tuna than Albacore, but Albacore is smaller than the big three, which must have the most mercury.

Little did I know that I've eaten fresh bonito; I caught a Skipjack in Hawaii a lifetime ago.

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I make a tuna tapenade for classes and parties, which is always well received. It makes a great sandwich too.

Tuna and Olive Tapenade

1 cup pitted kalamata olives, drained

1/3 cup sliced green olives with pimento, drained

½ cup very coarsely chopped roasted red peppers

2 large cloves garlic, minced or smashed

Juice of half a lemon

1 tablespoon capers

1 tablespoon minced shallot

1 pinch red pepper flakes

1 can light Italian tuna packed in olive oil (do not drain)

Place the olives, red peppers and garlic in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to chop the olives roughly and mix the ingredients. (Or chop roughly by hand). Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir to combine and adjust seasoning if necessary. (Can be made a day or two in advance. Refrigerate, but bring back to room temperature for serving.)

For an appetizer, I serve this on crostini topped with a parsley leaf.

(My usual tuna is Genova brand -- light, not white)

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Thanks, Blether. According to Wiki, Bonito is typically smaller than Albacore by about three or four feet. So true Bonito (aka Katsuo or Skipjack) is a smaller type of tuna than Albacore, but Albacore is smaller than the big three, which must have the most mercury...

If I read it right, Fishbase has Thunnus Alalunga (Albacore) at max length 140cm, common length 100cm, and Katsuwonus Pelamis (Katsuo) at 110cm/80cm. I think of the others I listed, Yellowfin is the in-between size, with the Big-eye and Bluefins in the Juggernaut class.

Size linked to mercury concentration sounds about right.

Edited by Blether (log)

QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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garlic, garbanzo beans, canned tuna, oregano sauteed in olive oil til garlic brown, and beans creamysoft in the middle, splash of lemon juice to taste. Be nice to have sliced green olives, but was out.

Tossed with pasta (orchietti are good, or bowties) cooked in well salted water.

Topped with chopped fresh tomatoes (those lovely brown ones), and a side of steamed broccoli.

The small eater took seconds, the middle sized eater took 3rds, so I guess I'll be making it again.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Ortiz makes some great canned tuna. If I recall rightly, there was an especially toothsome version that came in a small can for $17.99. I can't remember what it was, and the can was smaller than a regular small can... but man was it delicious. Belly tuna perhaps? The canned Spanish version of toro?

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