Albacore Tuna: Go Beyond The Tin
Posted: Dec 24 2013
Albacore tuna is among the most popular fish cuts in the world. Unfortunately, a lot of people associate Albacore tuna with canned tuna. While this does make albacore widely consumed around the world, people have misconceptions about tuna. It comes in a much higher quality, both in flavor and texture, than what's found in cans -- and in sushi, it's an extremely popular cut that's used in all types of dishes and rolls. Because it's not that common around Japan, its use in sushi was limited until recent years, though Albacore tuna has become popular among restaurants across the globe.
Put aside what you think you know about Albacore tuna, from the "Chicken Of The Sea" moniker to its use in tuna salad sandwiches (which, to be fair, are quite good). Albacore is considered a "white tuna" but when you look at an authentic cut, you'll see that its meat has a pink/peach color. And unlike canned tuna, albacore meat is soft but firm, with a flavor that's distinctive without overbearing.
When it comes to sushi, "white tuna" can actually encompass many different types of meat. In addition to Albacore tuna, escolar, sura, and porbeagle actually use the label, at least at sushi restaurants. This isn't because of the actual technical category, but rather because of marketing and availability. True "white tuna" is actually Albacore tuna (thunnus alalunga); the others are generally substitutes with similar tastes or textures.
Sushi chefs and home cooks can use Albacore tuna in a variety of ways. Because it has a firm consistency, it's ideal for nigiri. Another preparation method is known as tuna tataki: grilling an albacore fillet for just a few seconds. This cooks the surface and acts as sear to seal in the flavor; the fillet is then placed in ice water right away to concentrate the flavor. Tuna tataki is so popular that it can even be found in steakhouses. However, its origin comes from sushi, and that's still how we love to use it. Lastly, another popular recipe is garlic albacore. Garlic infused soy sauce with a bit of ginger and green onion is perfect for this white tuna fish.
Our albacore tuna is are caught wild and MSC certified, that means it's a highly sustainable fish. You can enjoy this fish knowing that they are caught using the the least harmful method to the environment and fish stock. Whether it's for nigiri or tataki, there's a reason why Albacore tuna is one of the world's most enjoyed fishes. Fish For Sushi has Albacore tuna for restaurants and home cooks; view our catalog to learn more.