Bottarga is the salted, pressed, and dried roe sack of Sicilian tuna (tonno in Italian). A traditional delicacy in Sicily known as "Poor Man's Caviar," bottarga is also gaining appreciation among top U.S. chefs for its full flavor and variety of uses.
Bottarga di Tonno is for the true seafood lover—very aromatic, full of the flavors of the sea, and much stronger than Bottarga di Muggine.
Salting tuna roe sacs is a very old process—pictorial records date back to 2,900 years ago—and is done throughout the world: Turkey, Greece, North Africa, and today even Australia and Japan. Sicily maintains a reverence for bottarga on par with Sardegna. The roe is removed intact from the large tuna fish, like a long fat cake. The sacks are carefully washed and purified with clean water. The roe sacks need to remain whole and unbroken for this traditional process to be carried out and to ensure the finest quality. The sack is carefully packed under sea salt to draw out the moisture and pressed gently under boards. Once dry, the sacks are hung in a cool, dry place for several days. This ancient curing process preserves the roe and ages it very much as if it were a prosciutto.
Try hot fettuccine doused with garlic-infused olive oil, red pepper flakes, and grated tuna bottarga, or shave the bottarga paper thin and sprinkle with a zesty Sicilian olive oil such as Olio Verde and serve as an antipasto. Grate the bottarga as a seasoning for pasta with seafood sauces, over sliced tomatoes, or on grilled vegetables for a very authentic Sicilian experience.
Vacuum packed. Refrigerate after opening.
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