Tuna is a saltwater fish that belongs to the mackerel family. Tuna is popularly sold in canned form although fresh tuna is also available. Tuna is canned in edible oils, in brine, in water, and in various sauces.
Unique because of their pink to dark red flesh, tuna is a carnivorous fish specie. Their meat has a flaky texture and rich flavor with high oil content. It has a unique taste, texture and versatility that make it popular around the world. The fish can be baked, grilled, steamed, fried or even minced for a recipe.
Bluefin: Bluefin have a blue metallic color on top and silver white on the bottom. Yellowfin: Deriving its name from the yellow fins, their body is also blue with a silver white undertone. Other varieties include Albacore, Skipjack and Bonito.
Tune is used as a steak and in sandwiches and salads. Tuna can be seared, broiled, smoked, roasted, grilled, fried or stewed. It is also served raw in the form of sushi or sashimi. It dries very quickly, so should be cooked very briefly over a high heat; marinated before cooking; or simmered in a sauce. Due to its rich protein content and low calorie count, tuna is consumed excessively by athletes, sportsmen and bodybuilders.
1. Tuna has a high content of good fatty acids, vitamin D and is a good source of low fat protein. Canned tuna may have a higher content of mercury and should not be consumed by pregnant women.
2. Like other fish, tuna is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids that are extremely good for cardiovascular health.
3. The high levels of omega-3 essential fatty acids in tuna help protect against muscular degeneration of the eye and dry eye syndrome.
4. It also protects against cancer in the ovaries, pancreas, and every part of the digestive tract and also lowers the risk of leukemia.
5. Tuna is a good source of protein.
6. Selenium present in tuna acts as a powerful antioxidant.
Tip: Tuna dry out fast and should be cooked for a short period of time on a high heat or marinated before cooking. Thicker steaks stay juicier. Researchers have found that consuming tuna that has a relatively higher natural fat content might help reduce the amount of mercury intake as compared to consuming tuna with a low fat content.
How to buy and store
When buying, choose tuna which have been trimmed neatly with a dark red flesh and meaty aroma. While most other fish are displayed on a bed of ice, fresh whole tuna will be displayed buried in ice. Tuna is best known in its canned form. It may be canned in oil, water or broth. Though tuna canned in oil is the moistest, it also has the highest calorie content. Tuna fish must be refrigerated at the lowest temperatures. In case you are carrying tuna fish with you on a day full of errands, be sure to keep an ice-box in the car. Shelf life of tuna can be extended by freezing it.
Did you know?
Tuna never rest and must always keep moving to get the oxygen required for their body. They are not cold blooded like most fish.