Spanish Almadraba Bluefin Tuna Belly Steak (Ventresca)
Approximately 9 vacuum sealed 1 lb. packs, 4 pieces per pack, 6-7oz. each (about 12 lbs.)
Bluefin Tuna Belly (thunnus thynnus) -- known as ventresca in Spain and toro in Japan -- can have 10 times the fat content of other parts of the same fish. It’s what gives this cut its beautiful buttery texture and complex flavor. This Spanish bluefin tuna belly is very high in omega-3 fatty acids, as well as vitamin B3 (niacin) to boost heart health; vitamin B12, necessary to form red blood cells; and vitamin D, to aid mineral absorption.
Spain has a 3,000-year history of catching bluefin tuna. Fishing boats along the coast of Cádiz still use the centuries-old almadraba technique of net fishing. Originally, fishermen stretched nets across the Strait of Gibraltar, trapping fish returning to the Mediterranean to spawn. Modern fishing boats use an underwater labyrinth of nets to catch their day’s quota.
Store frozen seafood in your freezer until you’re ready to use it, then thaw only as much as you plan on cooking.
RECIPES & TIPS
Tuna belly is served raw, or lightly torched, for sushi or sashimi. Tuna belly also works well for tuna tartare. Pan-searing is the classic method for cooking tuna, but tuna belly can also be grilled or baked. Its striations of fat readily soak up the flavors of marinades. In Spain, tuna belly is often poached or conserved in oil flavored with garlic, lemon, herbs, and spices. Use poached or conserved tuna as you would canned tuna, in salads or pasta dishes.