Burbot: Ecology, Management, and Culture

Some Effects of Freezing Techniques on Burbot Meat

Martin A. Stapanian and Yukio Kakuda

doi: https://doi.org/10.47886/9781888569988.ch18

Abstract.—Burbot Lota lota meat is nutritious and low in fat, and burbot liver oil is high in vitamins. However, burbot is not popular as a food fish in much of North America due to its appearance and because the meat has a relatively short shelf life. We present results from sensory panels on fried burbot meat that had been frozen and stored for 5 months with three methods: (1) dipping meat in liquid nitrogen, followed by storage at –80°C; (2) direct storage at –80°C; and (3) direct storage at –18°C. Panelists scored fried samples for tenderness, juiciness, fishy flavor, and overall desirability. In addition, texture (peak force at maximum compression and work performed) and color (lightness and a- and b-hues) of uncooked, defrosted meat (anterior and posterior sections, with and without skin removed) were measured instrumentally. Fried samples that had been directly stored at –80°C were scored by panelists as most tender, most juicy, and most desirable overall. Panelists also scored fried samples that had been directly stored at –80°C as less fishy tasting than samples frozen at –18°C. Freezing method, section of fillet, and presence/absence of skin had no effect on either texture variable or on any color variable measured. Posterior sections of burbot meat had higher levels of a-hue and b-hue than anterior sections. The relatively intermediate values of overall desirability combined with the results from other studies suggest that prepared products from frozen burbot meat may be better suited for commercial sale than frozen fillets.