Proper handing and bleeding techniques will help you present the best quality tuna to your table. For school sized tuna, common south of MV, these simple techniques using a raw water wash down will assist in bleeding a live tuna, improving it’s taste and texture dramatically.
6 Steps For Preserving Tuna Meat
1. Gaff tuna close to the head/gills to minimize damage and bruising to flesh.
2. Once tuna hits the deck, immediately insert a raw water wash down hose into the tuna’s mouth. Make sure the raw salt water is running through the tuna’s gills, not into the stomach.
3. Using a sharp knife, sever the main artery by slicing the throat where it meets the body cavity.
4. The primary goal is the keep the tuna alive with the raw water until it’s fully bled. If needed, a wet towel can be used to hold the tuna for several minutes until complete.
5. Submerge the bled tuna into an iced down cooler.
6. To enjoy the best quality tuna flavor and texture, allow fillets to rest for 24 – 48 hours before prepping for consumption. This allows the muscles to relax and lactic acid buildup to dissipate.