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Decent Canned Smoked or Unsmoked Seafood? (Not Tuna, Mackerel, Sardines, herring or Salmon)

Sure i know fresh is best, but I'm working on a project requiring canned seafood.Has anyone had a good tasting canned seafood that is not tuna , salmon, sardines, herring or mackerel ? I'm especially curious about smoked products( smoked shrimp, octopus, squid? or unsmoked of same?) The smoked oysters and smoked clams i have tasted have been so oily and oversmoked that I didn't think much of them, but maybe there are good versions out there...? The canned products could be Asian or European or American- doesn't matter. I recently noticed a Japanese can of braised eel (unagi); anyone had that? I don't care for TrJoe's canned smoked trout- has little flavor and is dry. This is a tough one, so Thanks so much for your help!

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  1. I'm a big fan of tinned pulpo and calamaris, most being imported from either Spain or Portugal In addition canned Scungilli (welks) ,calamari ,and clams .I prefer the LaMonica brand http://www.lamonicafinefoods.com/ that is available in most markets here on Long Island .I've seen Abalone in the Asian markets but have yet to try them. Have you or anyone else???

    1. well, not sure it would be to your taste, but we like canned dace (cantonese product available in most asian and all chinese groceries). it comes in a couple of different "flavors", plain fried, w/ black bean. with mei-cai pickle & etc. we drain it, then pan fry it and serve over rice. eagle brand (hope i am remembering correctly) is pretty good.

      also, i've had both japanese and taiwanese canned braised eel that i've liked and other brands that are way too sweet. since which brands are available varies every time i shop for it, i.e. not all that often, i just look at the cab/sugar info on the label to figure out if we might like it.

      1. I've had some surprisingly good -- not great, but more than serviceable -- canned lump crabmeat. I used to avoid this stuff like the plague, but it's actually not bad and convenient to have in the fridge. Unfortunately I don't recall the brand -- i get it at Restaurant Depot and they have a few brands. NB: Only the jumbo lump is good -- the lower grades aren't worth it.

        1. wow, this is so exciting; youall are being sooo helpful! off to find some of these. thnx so much.

          1. This is my favorite smoked seafood, although I have never bought it canned:


            (Columbia River smoked sturgeon


            For unsmoked, I recommend PNW razor clams from the same source. Minced for chowder or fritters.

            2 Replies
            1. re: GH1618

              My local food store extraordinaire, Formaggio Kitchen, sells a tiny artisinal (just 2 people!)smoked sturgeon from Oregon's Choice. They're out of it now but it's coming!(and FK does sell on line too, fyi).

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                Thanks for the tip, but I already have my ticket. Next month I will be getting it just out of the smoker!

              1. I like canned wahoo (also called ono in Hawai'i).

                1. well, this has been a real education. Here's what I've found in Boston re canned seafood:

                  BIG NO: lump crab at WF I know you might find this hard to believe (i know i do) but even my omnivore Abyssinians wouldn't touch it! they looked at me like "What IS this? you know we don't eat cardboard"
                  Also the Japanese canned unagi and 'yellowtail' (not hamachi but tuna it seems) sweet, leathery tough, yech.

                  excellent from Matiz (Spain): Octopus in olive oil, Cockles in olive oil
                  excellent from Cole (OR, USA) Smoked Trout; Smoked Mussels

                  Goya Octopus- If compared plain, the Matiz is infinitely better, but if sauteed in garlic oil w/ some pimenton, you can't really tell the difference between the 2.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: opinionatedchef

                    Curious -- what brand of crab did you get at WF?

                    1. re: opinionatedchef

                      I'm glad you are tapping into the Spanish stuff. They take great pride in their canned seafood and its a totally different beast then what you deal with here. I wanted to buy some to take home when I was in Barcelona last summer but the choices were so vast that I got overwhelmed and I didn't buy anything! What a regret.

                      1. re: opinionatedchef

                        I was very surprised by the quality of Goya octopus the first time I purchased it. It's not quite as good as Spanish preserves, but it is still very tasty.

                        1. re: opinionatedchef

                          You're mixed up.

                          Yellowtail is Hamachi and has a number of different names depending on details-too many to go into here.

                          Yellowfin is Tuna 'Thunnus Albacares' to be exact

                          1. re: Sam Salmon

                            sam, sorry kiddo, i no mixed up.Label writer is mixed up. Yellowtail it was not,yellowfin it was.

                        2. Ducktrap in Maine has good smoked shellfish, esp mussels.

                          2 Replies
                          1. If you would like to try something really different, try canned smoked shad roe. Browned well on both sides in a saute' pan and hit with a little sherry at the end.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                              yes,such a delicacy to Virginians. never had it smoked but absolutely did not like it when i had local shad roe in gloucester va when i was a visiting teenager, but maybe i'd like it now............