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Is canned tuna cooked? Here is the expert’s answer

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Every Italian has at least one can of canned tuna in their pantry. According to statistics, at least 94% of Italian families consume this canned fish once a week. It is an extremely versatile and economical food, two factors that should not be discriminated against. Many consumers are skeptical about the nutritional contribution that canned tuna could guarantee, but according to what experts guarantee, the nutrients are quantitatively comparable to those of fresh fish because it is an excellent source of noble proteins, iodine, phosphorus and omega 3.

We can find many varieties of tuna, among which stand out the natural tuna, which is preserved in its own cooking water, or the tuna in olive oil, which is tastier in the mouth. Generally, tuna caught for storage is immediately frozen and thawed only at the time of processing: the fillets are cleared of waste and packaged in a box or jar. Once the packages are sealed, the tuna is sterilized to finish cooking.

Tuna is a widely used food throughout the country. The main uses of tuna in the kitchen are in salads, to season them, or as a condiment for starters: alone or with cherry tomatoes or tomato sauce. Its great versatility is under everyone’s eyes, it is also excellent on traditional rustic products such as pizza, calzones or meatloaves.

As mentioned before, once caught, the tuna is immediately frozen, activating the so-called “cold chain” and transported to the factories where it will be thawed for processing. Once cleaned and removed the parts considered waste, it is steamed, divided and canned. Also in this case, it is important to read the label in order to have precise information on where the processing took place and by what methods: it usually takes place partially or entirely in Italy.

In our country, the type of tuna most purchased and, therefore, the most consumed is that in olive oil or sunflower seeds. Inside we find salt and the amount varies from brand to brand and we could also find sea salt. Usually, no preservative is added because the tuna is sterilized immediately after canning. Favorite parts of tuna for canning are the back and belly. These are considered “prized areas” of the fish because they are soft and contain more fat. This represents approximately 40% of whole tuna.

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