fish roe

Fish roe, milt and ovary(魚卵/白子/卵巣) in Japan

Japanese names often have a “ko” at the end. My name is Yu”ko”,also. This “ko” means “child of “.

In Spanish, names with the letter “O” means male, right? I used to get calls from whores at night when I stayed in a cheap hotel in front of Madrid’s train station. They made a mistake me as a guy. Hahaha😛

fish roe page introduction

Anyway, today I introduce the fish roe, milt and ovary, which is eaten well in Japan. Almost all them have a word “ko” means children of fish.


Milt (白子)


The milt means “Shirako (白子)” . Ankou(anglerfish), Fugu(puffy), and Tara(cod)’s ones are especially flavorful.

We eat as a sake snack well at Izakaya.
Also, we eat them with ponzu shoyu, chopped leeks and Momiji-oroshi (grated daikon radish  and carrot) on them.

Urchin (うに / 雲丹)


Urchin calls as “Uni” in Japan. I do not want eat them by foreigners. Because these are too tasty.
This texture is creamy and savory…also, melts on the tongue. I can not describe about this texture…

I never regard a sushi restaurant that does not serve urchin as a sushi restaurant.

Anyway, this food is for god of sea and Japanese. So, please do not eat them.

Uni recipe

Japanese people usually eat them in Sushi, but recently some people have been eating them in pasta.
However, I do not like this because of the fishy smell.


Cod roe (たらこ)


Cod roe is called “Tarako” is the most popular and general roe foods among Japanese.

We often eat this raw, grilled or “Mentaiko (明太子)”, spicy tasted cod roe. This is famous food in Fukuoka.

Mentaiko (明太子)

Play Video

We often eat them raw on the rice as a side dish or mixed with pasta.
Mentaiko, Tarako pasta is now then one of our national dish!

Mentaiko recipe

mentaiko toast

There is a mentaiko mayonnaise. This is delicious spread on bread and toasted. Check it out!

Herring roe (数の子)


Herring roe is “Kazunoko” in Japan . 
They are salted, so we eat to remove salt in water before eating.

It’s a unique crunchy texture, difference from caviar or cod roe…

Osechi ryori (おせち料理)


Kazunoko is a mass of eggs, and it is valued as a symbol of the prosperity. It is also a food of good omen😃

So we eat them on the occasion of the New Year or a wedding foods.

The new years dishes are called Osechi ryori. This is th one of the typical Japanese dish.

kazunoko recipe


This is a recipe for baby sardines, which are often included in Osechi dishes. It is boiled in soy sauce and soup stock.

FYI: Cookpad

Salmon roe (いくら)


The Japanese call salmon roe “Ikra”. Ikra means egg in Russian. It was named after the Russian word for salmon roe…I don’t know why😅

Oyakodon (親子丼)

fish oyako don

“Oyako” means parents and child. “don”  means bowl. So, this is a seafood Oyakodon made with salmon and salmon roe.

Salted salmon roe (すじこ)

The salted salmon roe is called “Sujiko”. It particularly refers to roe harvested from salmon just before spawning and that have been removed from the membrane.


Flying fish roe (とびこ)


“Tobiko” is flying fish roe. These are often used on top of a California roll. As you know, it’s a unique and popping texture. 

Tobiko recipe

califolnia roll

This is Japanese style Californian roll recipe.

FYI: Cookpad

Mullet roe (からすみ)


Dried mullet roe is called “Karasumi”, which is dipped into salt. This is named from the shape of chinese ink(“Kara” means old China. “Sumi” means ink in Japanese).

Peel and slice thinly. This is typical Sake snacks.

Karasumi recipe


It is one of Japan’s 3 major delicacies as same as “Uni”. The last one must be too shocking for you…I introduced it on Chinmi.

We eat them pickled in salt as a snack with sake.

Puffy's ovaries (ふぐのこ)


Puffy’s ovaries is called “Fugunoko” . (Puffy is called Fugu, one of the expensive fish.)

As you know, ovary of the fugu has very strong toxins. If you ate it’s ovary, you must be die within 30 min. 

However, Japanese did not give up eating the fugu ovaries despite our ancestors died.

Fugunoko recipe


They invented that pickled in salted rice bran the Fugu ovaries for more than 2 years can eliminate the toxin. 

This is allowed to make fugunoko recipe in a part in Ishikawa Prefecture, Hokuriku.

We eat them pickled in lees as a snack with sake.

Caviar (キャビア)


The combination of champagne and caviar is one of the Nouveau riche menu, but in fact, it is said that there is no wine that goes well with caviar.

But if it’s Sake, there is a wine that goes well with caviar, though. 

Tomburi (とんぶり)

Japanese caviar is good for your health!😃

This is Tomburi (とんぶり) called  “The field caviar” .  Tomburi is not fish roe but a food made from the fruit of the summer cypress.

This is said to be a nourishing tonic, cystitis, and itching remedy.

I hope the world can catch up with the Japanese taste. hahaha😊

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: