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  • Tuna

    Dear All

    Anyone have experience of fresh (or frozen) tuna ?

    Like most people, I have eaten tuna (mainly canned) since I can remember. In more recent times, I've eaten fresh (aka defrozen)tuna steaks and my favourite - tuna sashimi. Though raw, the sashimi does not smell fishy or have an unpleasant taste and seems to be more about the firm texture.

    However, our local hypermarket, French-owned Carrefour, has a big fresh (or defrosted) fish counter selling, amongst others, tuna. Recently, when buying chunks of tuna to make kebabs, my kids complained that the tuna made their mouths and lips itch and tingle. I can't say I noticed it myself.

    This weekend, I wanted tuna again for kebabs but they couldn't cut up 2 feet-long yellow-fin tuna for me. They asked me to wait and brought through a whole monster tuna. They called it an elephant tuna (I believe it's called a blue-fin tuna) at least 6 feet long and very thick-bodied. They proceeded to carve it up from just behind the head / gills and gave me a lump of it. I took it out of the ref next day and noticed an unpleasant smell. It wasn't the smell of rotting fish but was a strong odour. I washed the big chunk and put it on the cutting board. I noticed that as well as the dark firm flesh (some of which seemed to de-laminate slightly) there was also an area of very dark, loose squishy flesh (furthest away from the skin) which I cut off and discarded.

    Now, I have sensitive skin on my hands etc which reacts to things like lemon juice, becoming very itchy and irritated, turning red. I was amazed to find this time that cutting up the tuna was doing the same thing to my skin. My hands tingled and itched excrutiatingly and I had to wash them under running water. I did the same with the tuna and it lost some of its smell and pungency. Funny enough, the salmon I had also bought did not react with my skin in the least and smelled like fresh salmon.

    I marinated the tuna (lemon braai marinade) and cooked the kebabs on the barbie. The result, everyone who tried the tuna had the same itchy sensation again, even me this time, though for me it was more of a sharp flavour on my tongue than an itch. It wasn't the marinade which I've used before on other things with no problem. It was definitely the fish. We abandoned eating the tuna as it wasn't a pleasant experience.

    BTW the salmon was fine.

    Has anyone experienced anything like this with tuna ? I was even wondering if it was a mercury blast or radiation ! Perhaps the size of the fish means the flesh is intensely flavoured compare to smaller tuna, I don't know.

    That tuna is now off our menu. Yellow-fin from now on (if we eat tuna).
    Last edited by Lachlan09; 29th June 2014, 09:11.

  • #2
    Simple solution really.... Don't eat anything that once had a beating heart


    (The smiley face is to soften the unavoidably preachy tone of my response)
    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

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    • #3
      I totally agree - unless they are tasty !

      As for the tuna, I researched all over the net but couldn't find anything similar regarding the flavours of different types of tuna.

      However, by sheer accident, I came across a reference which then brought me to wikipedia. see link below:-

      Scombroid food poisoning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      The peppery effect in the mouth was exactly it. I got some rashes when using the raw fish.

      I suppose the possibility after the fish is caught by some factory ship in the Pacific, of in and out the freezer, then lying on a hot quayside for a while and/or the hypermarket loading yard then in the freeze again until thawed for people like me isn't the best way to keep fresh at their best.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Lachlan09 View Post
        I totally agree - unless they are tasty !
        "Scombroid food poisoning is a foodborne illness that results from eating spoiled (decayed) fish" - Wikipedia

        Yum! I can see why this would be irresistable.
        "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

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        • #5
          Aye, I should stick to salmon like God intended !

          Negiri sashimi is superb if the tuna is kept fresh !

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Lachlan09 View Post
            Negiri sashimi is superb if the tuna is kept fresh !
            Sounds amazing! But I can't find it anywhere in my local Aldi . . . .

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