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Tsukiji Fish Market Pictures


jogoode
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looks like they were shaved? maybe for bonito?  who knows...

The one to the right appears to have a large whole in the skull. Is the brain used for anything in particular?

There is a specific way of preparing a tuna when captured called the 'Tanaguchi' method.

The tuna when captured, will get a club to the head to shock it and then a spike is inserted into the soft spot to stop it from thrashing and bruising the flesh.

Once that is done, the head is split open for pithing, insetion of a thick string like mono filament which will destroy the brain and the spinal cord to stop the biochemical reactions which may contribute to deterioration of the flesh.

The fish is then bled, gilled and gutted in a specific manner and flash frozen.

All these things are done to keep the flesh in its most prestine condition so that it retains a high market value.

Thank you for the explanation. It certainly makes sense that they would preserve these very valuable fish as well as possible. From a physiologic POV I am curious as to the mechanisms that would make this work. I imagine that it would have to do with a stress response, but then I would think that somehow they would need to cut off circulatory flow from the brain. Sorry for the graphic thoughts! :smile:

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

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Hi All,

I'd like to share with you some of the pictures my husband and I took during our visit to the Tsukiji Fish Market, in 25th September 2006. We arrived there at 7h30 in the morning, spent 2 hours looking around and we did our best not to get run over. We finished our visit with an amazing sushi breakfast at Daiwa Sushi Bar.

:smile:

Marcia

Thanks for the nice pictures! I will be making a trip out to Tsukiji in November when a friend comes to visit. I was just wondering if there was a specific reason why you chose Daiwa Sushi Bar and how much you paid for your breakfast. Would you recommend it again? Also, did you drink a beer with your morning sushi like many of the men?? :biggrin:

p.s. Glad to see that you got so many great obento goods! I want one of those egg molds...

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Thanks for the nice pictures!  I will be making a trip out to Tsukiji in November when a friend comes to visit.  I was just wondering if there was a specific reason why you chose Daiwa Sushi Bar and how much you paid for your breakfast.  Would you recommend it again?  Also, did you drink a beer with your morning sushi like many of the men?? :biggrin:

p.s.  Glad to see that you got so many great obento goods!  I want one of those egg molds...

Hi sk_ward, no there was no specific reason, we saw two sushi bars with big queue outside. We thought that either one would be great so we just chose one and we stood in the queue for about half an hour. We had a sushi set that also included miso soup and green tea, so we didn't order beer like the japanese gentleman on our side did. :laugh: It was still 9h30am.

This is the picture of Sushi Daiwa, from Wikitravel:

gallery_24933_3757_8496.jpg

The sushi set was very big. It included nigiri sushi of tuna, toro tuna, salmon, mackerel, octopus, prawn, eel, squid; gunkansushi of salmon roe, sea urchin roe; tekkamaki of tuna and salmon roe. Plus omelette (tamagoyaki). Everything was incredible tasty, the tuna felt like velvet on my tongue. We paid 6300 Yen for 2 sushi sets. I do recommend the place.

The chef (the one in the far corner of the picture) was very nice and he laughed when we tried the tuna and we let out a loud "Hmmmmmm" at the same time... He also pretended to tell me off because I couldn't finish all (I left the tamagoyaki, the soup and 4 tekkamaki...) then I pointed to my belly and inflated my cheeks with air to tell him how full i was. He laughed again and we bowed, we said 'gochisosama deshita' and he bowed back and thanked us too with a big grin. :biggrin:

At first I thought i couldn't face raw fish first thing in the morning. But then after strolling in the market, after watching the tuna being purchased and after watching the amazing care that the tuna sellers (those in green shirt on the pics above) take with each piece sold, you cannot but be very excited to try what was so special about those tuna fishes. I'm pleased we did, I'm pleased we tried, it was a great experience.

:smile:

Edited by Marcia (log)
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  • 3 weeks later...

Regarding the method of killing the tuna, I don't know anything about the "sticking the spike in the soft spot to stop it from thrashing" but inserting a monofilament in the spinal cord was standard operating procedure, considered humane, for pithing frogs for physiology experiments.

The heads are most likely used for making stocks.

The heads, regardless, continue to move reflexively. I spent a few long seconds looking at some (you can't stand in one spot in Tsukiji for much longer without getting in someone's way) and was surprised when I saw heads continuing to move, as if gasping for air.

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  • 2 months later...

I'm wondering about Tsukiji--is the auction still closed to the public? I have just one early morning in Tokyo, and I'm thinking of finally going to Tsukiji (after 8+ years living in Japan, I've never been...). If it's closed, can you still take pictures of the fish?

Is Daiwa easy to find from the market?

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And another close-up:

gallery_24933_3757_18448.jpg

Marcia

In the Philippines, we usually grill the jaw part of the tuna heads (called panga in tagalog). It is delicious and one Grilled Panga can feed 2-3 people. Tuna heads are also great in our sour and savoury soup called Sinigang.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

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I'm wondering about Tsukiji--is the auction still closed to the public?  I have just one early morning in Tokyo, and I'm thinking of finally going to Tsukiji (after 8+ years living in Japan, I've never been...).  If it's closed, can you still take pictures of the fish?

Is Daiwa easy to find from the market?

I did hear about the auction being closed to tourists some time in 2005, but since then I've read a few blog entries that mentioned being at the auction. Also recently read a news article about the buyers at the auction being annoyed by tourists. As much as I can figure, tourists are still allowed to view the auction, but are not supposed to take flash pictures or touch the fish.

The rest of the market still seems to be open as usual.

My eGullet foodblog: Spring in Tokyo

My regular blog: Blue Lotus

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