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#News • 28 September 2021

Raw bluefin tuna: How long must a piece be aged to reach the optimum point?

Fresh raw ingredients is key to quality cuisine, but fresh does not always mean optimal and even less so when we’re talking about raw bluefin tuna.

The Balfegó slaughter system (ike jime) and the feeding and storage of the fish, are key to aging the product.

The traceability system, where the slaughter date is indicated, also allows for accurate time keeping in order to carry out the entire process correctly.

“If you are brought a fish and it’s straight when you hold it by the tail, it means it’s fresh

but it doesn’t mean it’s the optimal time to eat it. It needs to settle”.

Ekaitz Apraiz, executive chef at Tunateca.

Chefs know that tuna requires a minimum of three or more days of aging to be able to eat it with optimal texture and flavor. But it’s much more complex than this. After 72 hours is the optimum time recommended to eat raw bluefin tuna.

How does aging affect raw bluefin tuna?

 

Let’s start at the beginning and with what’s obvious. Tuna is such a large fish that even their own temperature can take up to 24 hours to drop. For this reason, the important thing is that they settle and therefore, lower their temperature.

Another of the main reasons why we age raw bluefin tuna for at least 72 hours is because when the fish has just arrived, it comes so tense and stiff that none of its cuts are pleasant to eat.