herald

Sunday 22 October 2017

Pricepoints: Tinned Red Salmon

Childhood memories in a can

The good news is that tinned oily fish, such as salmon, is not just a good source of protein, it also contains valuable vitamins and minerals, and it is low in saturated fat.

Salmon also contains lots of omega-3 fatty acids that are said to help reduce the risk of heart disease and is particularly recommended for pregnant women.

Fish with edible bones, such as sardines and tinned salmon, also contain calcium and fluoride to help make kids' teeth stronger and prevent osteoporosis.

Tinned salmon is invariably sourced from the Pacific, especially Alaska, but is a close relative of our native Atlantic salmon. Red salmon (also called sockeye salmon) is a different species to the more common pink salmon and fetches a higher price because of its finer flavour.

This tasting was difficult as the products were almost identical, with just two ingredients in each tin: salmon and salt.

This really is a product you could buy on price alone as the differences in marks awarded were mainly to do with the salt content and the skill of the canning company.

However, my tasting panel had some clear preferences and I decided to add points for good value as well as flavour.

ALDI OCEANRISE WILD RED SALMON, €1.79 PER 213G

This contained the full fish, including bones and skin. The colour was a light red and the flavour was straightforward mild salmon with a little salt. Excellent value — almost half the price of the well-known branded tins. 7.5/10

DUNNES STORES WILD RED SALMON, €2.19 PER 213G

Solid red colour with the whole fish visible but with less skin than other tins. Good texture and taste of salmon with a little extra salt made this one of the tastiest. Second-best value with an excellent taste. 7.5/10

TESCO WILD RED SALMON (SKINLESS & BONELESS), €2.19 PER 180G

Almost bright red in colour this was a firm, very solid piece of fish with good salmon taste and just a hint of salt. The lack of bones make this a less nutritious option but it also made the taste a little less fishy and will appeal to the squeamish. 7/10

SUPERVALU WILD RED SALMON, €2.41 PER 213G

Solid piece of whole red salmon with bones and skin. Taste of solid flesh with mild salt. Good quality fish, decent flavour and a fairly reasonable price. 7/10

SUPERQUINN WILD RED SALMON, €2.59 PER 213G

Solid whole red salmon with good texture and straightforward flavours. Good quality, but price is a little higher than seems necessary. 6.5/10

JOHN WEST WILD RED SALMON, €3.49 PER 213G

Slightly lighter in colour, this contained the full fish; skin, bones and all. The fish had a slightly moist texture and tasted of salmon but with a noticeable salty aftertaste. Good but very, very expensive in comparison to some of the other brands. 6.5/10

PRINCES WILD RED SALMON, €3.29 PER 213G

The most skin of all the samples and a lighter pink-coloured flesh. Texture was a little softer than most and taste suffered a little from the extra skin and bone content. 6/10

SUNNY SOUTH WILD RED SALMON, €3.49 PER 212G

One of the darkest in colour of all the samples. Whole fish with a lot of skin and bone, firm flesh and reasonable quality. However, this seems a lot of money to pay for a name that is not even particularly well known. 6/10

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