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Thread: Canning fish?

  1. #1
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Canning fish?

    O.k., I get plenty of fresh fish out here, and I do take advantage as much as I can. But one thing I had discovered years ago was the incredible canned tuna in good olive oil that you get in Spain, and I have to admit to a weakness for good canned tuna. Since I get fesh tuna here for reasonable prices (cheaper than the cans from Spain...), I wanted to give it a try and can some myself. Has anyone done that? The process seems pretty straightforward with a pressure cooker, just wondering what kind of olive oil you use and what kind of additions make it even better - garlic, herbs, peppers? And while we are at it, does it make sense to can any other fish? I haven't seen canned opakapaka or opah before...

    Stefan

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by apicius9 View Post
    O.k., I get plenty of fresh fish out here, and I do take advantage as much as I can. But one thing I had discovered years ago was the incredible canned tuna in good olive oil that you get in Spain, and I have to admit to a weakness for good canned tuna. Since I get fesh tuna here for reasonable prices (cheaper than the cans from Spain...), I wanted to give it a try and can some myself. Has anyone done that? The process seems pretty straightforward with a pressure cooker, just wondering what kind of olive oil you use and what kind of additions make it even better - garlic, herbs, peppers? And while we are at it, does it make sense to can any other fish? I haven't seen canned opakapaka or opah before...

    Stefan
    i always rub the jars with gin in the inside to sterilize and for the taste... you can use the pressure cooker to make life easier, but its pretty straight forward

    i use Sicilian olive oil cause i like the strong flavor and i add salt and a bit of sugar

  3. #3
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    El Pescador's Avatar
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    I get canned blue fin belly in olive oil from my neighbor who's son is a tuna boat captain. It is truly amazing. Eating it gets you closer to God.

    Pesky

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    Senior Member goodchef1's Avatar
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    Hello Stefan,

    Actually, canning foods are not an ideal way to preserve foods. It is done for mass production, transportation, many different temperature changes, etc. etc. New technology out there like sous vide (under-vacuum) would be best to do what you want.

    Tuna is best used because of the firm flesh, which does not break down during long periods of storage, it also keeps its volume. rule of thumb, if you are going to marinade for short periods, you can use herbs, spices, etc. if for much longer periods,do not keep whole pieces in marinade. cold infuse the oil and strain. Whatever flavors you want to impart in the flesh, you can use. So experiment!

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    Quote Originally Posted by goodchef1 View Post
    Actually, canning foods are not an ideal way to preserve foods.
    Hmmm...I'm not so sure about this advice, how long have you been a chef and did you ever spend any time around your Mom or Grandmother when she was harvesting her garden and canning?

    The kind of canned tuna that Stefan is referring to is an excellent product!

    Stefan, I would recommend that you make an infused olive oil to pack your home-canned tuna in. Put extra virgin olive oil in a sauce pan on low-medium heat and add kosher salt, fresh dill, garlic and crushed chili flakes. About 45 mins should be enough to infuse the oil, then strain it through cheesecloth, cool and use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by goodchef1 View Post
    Hello Stefan,

    Actually, canning foods are not an ideal way to preserve foods. It is done for mass production, transportation, many different temperature changes, etc. etc. New technology out there like sous vide (under-vacuum) would be best to do what you want.

    Tuna is best used because of the firm flesh, which does not break down during long periods of storage, it also keeps its volume. rule of thumb, if you are going to marinade for short periods, you can use herbs, spices, etc. if for much longer periods,do not keep whole pieces in marinade. cold infuse the oil and strain. Whatever flavors you want to impart in the flesh, you can use. So experiment!
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but sous vide does not preserve food, like the canning method does.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew h View Post
    correct me if i'm wrong, but sous vide does not preserve food, like the canning method does.
    Exactly!

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    I can pretty extensively (jams/jellies, pickles, stock, etc) but have never tried fish in oil. How is it normally processed, under a pressure cooker? Is the fish canned raw or cooked somehow?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by sashae View Post
    Is the fish canned raw or cooked somehow?
    I seem to remember that the fish is canned raw and the closed can is cooked. Might be wrong though....

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Rottman View Post
    I seem to remember that the fish is canned raw and the closed can is cooked. Might be wrong though....
    i've tried both ways... results are similar

    we used to boil it out in a mix of sugar, salt, and water and then can or sometimes just can raw and cook

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