Bigeye tuna have torpedo-shaped bodies with dark metallic blue backs, and whitish lower sides and belly. The dorsal and anal fins are yellow.
Bigeye tuna has a relatively large eye compared with that of other tunas.
They can grow up to up to 2.5 metres in length and 200 kg. They are often found up to 1.8 metres in length and 100 kg.
Bigeye tuna can swim at speeds exceeding 70 km/hr.
It is important to match the cut of tuna to the type of dish being prepared
The belly (Otoro) of the tuna will have a much higher fat content requiring much less heat to bring out the flavours. Caution when grilling this cut on the barbeque as the oil may burn leaving an acrid flavour. It is much better to use the back loin (Akami), which has a lower oil content.
Bigeye tuna is sought after by Japanese for sushi and sashimi as it has superb eating qualities raw.
Grilled or barbecued, tunas are best seared and left rare centrally. Highlight with intense flavours such as charred capsicum, eggplant, balsamic vinegar and olive oil dressings on a bed of bitter greens and aioli, roasted garlic, and Japanese wasabi, soy and pickled ginger.
Tuna is also an excellent dish sliced thinly and briefly dropped into simmering “fish stock” or cooked as an Asian “hot-pot” to each diner’s preference.