Uni (Sea urchin’s testicles and ovaries)
The first one definitely has to be this!!
I could eat this 365 days a year! That’s how much I love uni.
Though I hear many foreigners recoil at the sight of it.
But if you have a bite, you’ll taste the all-encompassing deliciousness.
When my American and other foreign friends come to my place for dinner, they’ll ask “what? no uni?”
It’s a such a high-class food that I want to respond, “that’s impossible! how much do you think that costs?”
Though the cost is just a fly in the ointment, as Japanese people have loved this super popular delicacy as a side-dish to liquor and other meals for a long time.
Ikura (Salt-pickled salmon eggs)
And then this! Filling up a bowl with warm rice and then splashing ikura on top before dribbling soy sauce over it — if you gulp it down just like that, you can pass your time in supreme bliss.
But for some reason, they say it smells fishy and there are Japanese people who won’t eat it.
To me, it’s a mystery.
Kanimiso (Crab’s digestive cecum)
This is also delicious!
For me, I love crab as much as I love uni, but I love the crab itself.
I especially have a weakness for kanimiso.
But even if it’s recommended, there are a lot of foreigners who won’t eat it.
“It smells fishy, won’t do it,” they’ll say. That fishy smell is what makes it delicious, though.
Ankimo (Salt-pickled goosefish liver)
This is another food I love, and its smooth, rich flavor makes me want to use it as a substitute for everything and anything.
This is also a rather high-class food, but you can find it cheaper than uni.
Ika no Shiokara (Squid’s body mixed with the squid’s digestive cecum with salt added)
This is another food I love, and eating it on top of piping hot rice is delicious!
You can also eat it by placing it on cold rice, then pouring hot water over it to make it yuzuke.
This is also something most foreigners don’t eat. It’s especially fishy-smelling.
It’s probably a dish that Japanese people don’t agree on, either.
Kusaya (Horse mackerel after going through lactate fermentation by being dipped in salt water and sun-dried)
Just like the name says, this food smells. (Kusai = smelly)
If you take just a bite, you’ll taste the depth of the deliciousness. It’s a flavor that is hard to forget for a long time.
There are times where I eat kusaya excessively.
Karashi Mentaiko (Cod eggs pickled in mustard)
This has become one of my staple foods, and an ingredient that I can’t live without in my daily life.
I love regular tarako as well, but I love karashi mentaiko more.
It’s good raw, but since it’s also delicious grilled, it bears the impression of being an all-purpose food.
There are various theories about the origin of karashi mentaiko, it seems like there’s something missing.
Someone must have thought it up. I think it was a really huge invention.
Funasushi (Crucian carp mixed with sushi and fermented with lactic acid)
This is another rather smelly food but if I had to say, I would say it has a sour smell like cheese.
I hear a surprising amount of foreigners can eat this.
This is another food that you should taste a bite of to understand the peculiar, concentrated taste that’s exceedingly magnificent.
You’ll end up eating as much as you like, but it’s pretty expensive.