Poke Bowl Dreamin’

I went 70 miles offshore of Tofino, BC. The water on the beautiful west coast I get to call home started off as a greenish dark colour, and changed to a bright crystal clear dark blue the farther offshore we went. It was pure magic. Fishing for tuna is a bit different than jigging for halibut or fishing for salmon. When tuna bite, it’s seven rods down, adrenaline kicks in, and nothing else matters in the world but getting those fish to the boat. It was a magical day off shore fishing, playing with sharks, watching epic whales and a potential swordfish in the company of an epic crew.

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Roasted Tuna Head Ramen Noodle Soup

You will never have a stranger conversation than when you attempt to explain to the deckhand on a charter fishing boat why you want to keep the tuna heads from the Yellowfin you and your friends just caught. This was several months ago and I still recall the way that he craned his neck in confusion when I asked, “Hey, can you save a couple of those heads for me?” His reply was not as cordial as you would imagine. A PG version of it would be, “What are you going to do with them….Fish Head Soup?????”

My reply was equally baffling as I told him the story of watching a documentary that showed how traditional sushi chefs roast the collars and sometimes the heads to eat. In one motion, he shrugged his shoulders and slid the largest of the heads off of the cutting board and into a bag for me to cook with later.

Fast forward to several months of this head living in my freezer and my wife also questioning my sanity. I finally decided to pull it out and roast it. The meat was to be be picked off of the bone and the skull used for stock. The whole creation, in my mind, would come together flawlessly into a delicious bowl of piping hot ramen. The ramen did come out amazing…. But the whole process was not flawless. My wife still questions my sanity because I left the whole house smelling like roasted fish head for two days. So with this said, you have been warned…

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