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Mar 6, 2007 12:03 PM

Thawing frozen fish for sashimi

I bought a piece of frozen sashimi grade tuna to make sashimi. What is the best way to thaw it to maintain the quality of the fish?

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  1. Under cold running water with it still in plastic wrap and just before slicing and eating. A 1lb chunk of fish should take no more than 10 minutes under a trickle of cold water.
    Culinary Vixen

    1. I would not recommend Vixen's method. Here is how real sushi chefs do it. My wife is Japanese and we found several websites that explain (exact same way each website). You can go there and see for yourself if you can read Japanese. Anyway here are the steps:

      1. Wash frozen fish with tap water
      2. Prepare a bath of lukewarm (35-40C) water saturated with salt. It should be as salty as the sea. To confirm it is salty enough, the frozen fish should float, not sink.
      3. Let the fish sit for 3-4 minutes. (it will not be thawed at this point)
      4. Remove from the salt water and pat dry with paper towels.
      5. Wrap the fish in paper towels and place in a plastic bag. Put in the refrigerator (15C) to thaw for about 5 hrs.

      This will result in a finer color and better "umami" flavor.

      Here is one of the Japanese websites.

      1 Reply
      1. re: LollyH

        Your fridge is closer to 4C not 15C by the way