Don’t Throw Oil Out of Fancy Cans of Canned Fish
Depending on where you live, you may or may not be eating good food from cans in the near future. If your budget allows, I highly recommend that you get some fancy jars – at least a few – to make any degree of isolation you find yourself in a little pleasant, or at least bearable. Fashionable canned fish is a move.
There is a can of expensive tuna (in oil) that I scoffed at for several months. I’ve heard the difference between “really good” canned tuna and “regular” canned tuna, described as “day and night,” but I was skeptical about the difference three or four times better than Bumblebee, Sunkist, and the general store brand.
After staring at it for at least two minutes every time I went to the grocery store for the past three weeks, I finally bought it. It was good, but it didn’t startle me. The taste was definitely more delicate than tuna should be, and the fish was flaky rather than soft. Again, that was fine, but I’m not as obsessed with trendy canned tuna as I thought. I am, however, totally fascinated by the oil it got into.
I understand this statement hasDwight Schrute vibes, but please hold on here. The oil is obviously slightly tuna-flavored, but it doesn’t read “fishy” but “fatty and meaty.” After eating the tuna, I caramelized the onions in oil and it was the best damn caramelized onions I have ever eaten. The word “umami” is applied to many things, but it was one of the truest and cleanest examples of the term I have ever tried. The onions have practically melted in oil, almost like savory onion jam.
There is a fish house in Aberdeen, Mississippi, which may be one of my favorite restaurants in the world, at least that was before the original owner passed away. We used to go there often, but as my grandparents got older, we moved from eating in a restaurant to taking our catfish with us. Puppies, potatoes and slices of raw white onions were added to the fish, and the flavor coming from the styrofoam was the perfect combination of fried fish and hot onions. Onions sautéed in tuna oil taste similar to this aroma, only more intense, and this is probably why I still have a strong emotional reaction to this onion.
After eating the onions – almost straight out of the pan – I removed the browned onion and fish pieces from the oil and put the oil in the refrigerator. This morning I fried an egg in this oil and found it to be much more than enjoyable. The oil is good, that’s what I’m trying to tell you, and you should not – under any circumstances – throw it away. This applies not only to tuna can oil, but also to mackerel oil, sardine oil, anchovy oil, and any other fancy fish oil oil. If you don’t want to fry the onions, fry the egg or fry nothing and mix it with the vinaigrette. You can also mix it with a little vinegar and some herbs and dip the bread into it. Do you love warm aromatic olives ? Warm them up in fish oil. I tell you, this oil is valuable. Don’t waste it.