Tartare-grade fish

Tartare-grade fish

Safe consumption of raw fish

So that raw or partially cooked fish is safe to consume, it must have been frozen under very precise conditions at a specific temperature to meet Health Canada standards. Look for TARTARE-grade fish:

  • It’s been frozen at -20°C for at least 7 days. 
  • It has been thawed for no more than 24 hours.

Ask your IGA fish and seafood expert for guidance. They’ll be able to advise you about the three varieties of TARTARE-grade fish available: salmon, tuna, and tilapia. Three good habits to develop at home:

  • Refrigerate the fish as soon as possible after purchasing it. 
  • Store it in the fridge until you prepare it, and then again until it’s served. 
  • If serving the fish raw or partially cooked, eat it the same day it’s purchased.

How to avoid cross contamination

If preparing several types of tartare, properly wash and sanitize your work tools (knife, cutting board, bowls, etc.) between each ingredient. By respecting strict hygiene measures, you’ll avoid cross contamination. And don’t forget to wash your hands often.

When to prepare and how to store

Prepare your tartare at least 1 hour before it will be eaten (2 hours is even better) and refrigerate. The time in the fridge allows all the flavours to blend. Tartares should be eaten fresh on the day they’re prepared.



For handling raw fish, it’s essential to have perfectly clean hands.

bain marie

Iced double boiler

When preparing tartare, ingredient freshness is vital. Keep ingredients in a double boiler placed in a bowl full of ice.


Cutting board

For a clean and sanitized work surface, use a cutting board. It will be your best ally.


Well sharpened knife

When preparing tartare, the size of the ingredients makes a difference. A good knife will ensure success – it’s the right way to do it.

Tartare-grade fish: multipurpose

Basic techniques

How to make a maki

How to make a maki

Form 250 mL (1 cup) of cooked rice into a ball in the palm of your hand without pressing too hard. Place it in centre of the nori sheet on the less shiny side. Use your fingers to spread rice grains out on the nori, like a puzzle. It’s important to leave a 2-cm (½-in.) strip at top of the sheet free of rice. Press the rice gently with your fingers so it sticks, but the grains remain intact. For a California maki: turn the sheet rice-side down on your work surface with a rice-free strip at the bottom.

How to roll sushi

Roll the bottom of the sheet with your hands, pressing with your fingers. Never squeeze the maki in the palm of your hands. Lightly moisten the top of the nori sheet and roll the maki over again to seal the maki.

How to make a sushi dessert pizza

Form a rice patty in your hands, a bit like you’d form a ground meat burger patty. Since the rice won’t shrink like meat does when cooked, avoid making the patties too thick.

Cuiseur à riz

Rice cooker

With this amazing gadget, your rice will be perfect – guaranteed!

Tapis sushi

Sharp knife

With a good, well sharpened knife, cut the ingredients in a snap.


A sushi mat

You will shape your maki perfectly.

bol d'eau

A bowl of hot water

So the rice won’t stick to your fingers.