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Mar 4, 2014 03:22 PM

Calling Japanese speaking (or really reading) Chowhounders


On a recent trip to Hokkaido I tried some incredible salmon roe which was marinated in dashi and a few other things I think. Instead of the usual saltiness it was almost sweet, and seriously delicious on top of warm rice.

I bought a box of the stuff in the hopes of trying to make something similar at home but I was hoping someone out there might be able to translate the ingredients to give me a starting chance?

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  1. It says marinated in katsuo (bonito) dashi. Well there's sugar, along with some fish extracts and it looks like some preservatives. I will look them up tomorrow to confirm...Katsuo dashi is often used with soft tofu.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Silverjay

      Looks like, as stated, salmon roe (interesting to see it written in kanji) and soy sauce are involved.

      To reiterate, the Japanese in brackets reads "salmon roe soy sauce pickled/preserved in katsuo dashi."

      1. re: Silverjay

        Unfortunately the PC I'm on today doesn't have Japanese IME so I can't get exact ingredients but I'm assuming you're not interested in the names of the additives and preservatives. Looks like they tease the katsuo flavor from "fish extract" and "mackerel"....Anyways, you can buy katsuo dashi in bottled or powdered form. Or you can can look into buying "katsuo shoyu". I would toy around with these and some mirin for the sweetness. Not sure I would use regular cooking sake for a dish that's not cooked...

        1. re: Silverjay

          Thanks everyone this is amazing! Silverjay actually if you are able to work out the additives and preservatives even that would be incredible - I kind of want to get as full a picture as I can of put they put in originally. No rush though! I'm so grateful for everyone's help : )

          I've already tried making an ichiban dashi with kombu and bonito flakes and then added a small amount of soy sauce and sugar. This came close but the eggs still tasted like they were missing something. I wonder if this is the additional fish extract - maybe some kind of mackerel dashi?

          1. re: Antoniabruce

            MSG is also in there. Rest of the stuff are additives, enhancers, gelatin, stuff like that. This is a factory made product not a gourmet type of deal- although the orange writing on the right side indicates it won some kind of "academy award" as a food gift item!

            It literally says "seafood extract" and "mackerel" and since katsuo is not in the ingredients, I'm assuming they are using these to approximate the taste of the katsuo bushi, along with the MSG to give you konbu like umami boost.

            If you are making at home, I would use mirin instead of sugar and consider the concentrate version of katsuo dashi or research a better recipe online...Try marinating longer if you want a stronger taste.

            1. re: Antoniabruce

              You might try Mentsuyu. It's pre-mixed broth with dashi, soy and mirin. It can be used as a dipping sauce, or on noodles, or a dressing for hot spring eggs.

        2. Also, here is a simple recipe if you want to give it a try:

          (For 2 sacs worth of salmon roe)

          Japanese Sake ------ 100ml
          Mirin -------------------- 200ml
          Dark Soy Sauce ----- 100ml
          Mentsuyu (concentrated broth for noodles etc.) 200ml

          Mix those and pour over your roe and let sit over night.

          1. Brilliant thank you everyone so far for all your really helpful comments. I'm just about to embark on the next trial marinade - will let you know how it goes! : )