Octopus Species


The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

—————————————————-

OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-SALAD
Mizudako Octopus Sashimi Salad

Octopuses are common on the markets along the Mediteranean Sea, especially Greece, italy and Spain.
Tey are also very common in Asia, especially Korea and Japan.

OCTOPUS-MADAGO-TSUKIJI
For people living in Tokyo, you will find plenty inside the Tsukiji Market.

OCTOPUS-NUMAZU-HARBOUR
As for people living in Shizuoka Prefecture, go and visit the Harbour in Numazu City!

There many kinds of octopus, some edible, some definitely not!
I will talk here about the main varieties found, sold and eaten in Japan!

MADAKO
OCTOPUS-MADAGO-1

Madako or “True Octopus” will be sold from late Autumn till early Spring.
50,000 tonnes are caught in Japan while 100,000 tonnes are imported, 60% fromm Morocco, 20% from Mauritania and some more from South Africa.

OCTOPUS-MADAGO-2
Boiled Madako from Japan

OCTOPUS-MADAGO-3
Boiled Madako from South Africa

It is very often found boiled in the supermarkets and are appreciated in salads, chyawanmushi, takoyaki and so on.

OCTOPUS-MADAGO-4

But lightly as sushi nigiri is probably the best!

MIZUDAKO
OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-1

Mizudako, also called Shiodako and Oodako is a large variety reaching up to 3 metres. It is caught in Autumn and Winter at depths bewteen 100and 1,000 metres in the Northern half of Japan.
It is usually sold frozen. It is then cut when half thawn for:

OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-3
Mizudako sashimi

OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-SALAD
Mizudako Salad

OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-2
It is also very common boiled and pickled in rice vinegar.

OCTOPUS-MIZUDAKO-EGGS
Its eggs are a rare morsel eaten as sushi on a gunkan!

IIDAKO
OCTOPUS-IIDAGO-1

Iidako, also known as Komochidako or Ishidako are caught south of Hokkaido Island. They are comparatively small and do not measure more than 20 cm. A lot are caugt along the Korean Peninsula and China at depths down to 20 metres. They tend to lay their a bit everywhere, even inside empty cans at the bottom of the sea!
Imports have been increasing of late.

OCTOPUS-IIDAGO-2

Iidago are much appreciated cooked whole with their eggs or

OCTOPUS-IIDAGO-3

whole again, boiled or raw, as sushi on nigiri!

CHIHIRODAKO
OCTOPUS-CHIHIRODAKO-1

Chihirodako is local Shizuoka variety found at Numazu Harbour.
It is appreciated boiled or in Tenpura

OCTOPUS-CHIHIRODAKO-2
Its tentacles, boiled, are popular as sushi nigiri!

Shellfish Species 9: Round Clam-Hen Clam/Bakagai


The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

—————————————————-

AOYAGI-1

“Bakagai”, or Round clam/Hen Clam in English is found mainly in the Central part of Honshu Island.

AOYAGI-2

Actually, you have a good chance to discover it at low tide all over Japan.

AOYAGI-6

It is a versatile shellfish as it provides for two distinct morsels:

AOYAGI-5

The “Tongue” called “Aoyagi”. It is very popular in Japan for its colour and sweetness. It is both eaten as Sashimi and

AOYAGI-3

Sushi as nigiri.

AOYAGI-4

The second morsel, one of two muscle parts is called “Kobashira/Small pillar”.
Sushi chefs will keep them until they have enough to serve as sashimi or even better as suhi as gunkan!

Make sure to order either “Aoyagi” or “Kobashira” unless you want to start a long conversation by ordering “Bakagai”!

Shellfish species 11: Surf Clam/Ubagai


The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

—————————————————-

UBAGAI-1

“Ubagai” or more commonly called “Hokkigai” when served as sashimi or sushi have many names in English.
Member of the Trough Shells Groups, they are called Surf Clams, or more precisely, as pertains to the varieties eaten in Japan, either Japanese Surf Clams or Sakhalin Surf Clams as they are collected both along Japan and Sakhalin Islands shores

8,000 tonnes are caught in Japan every year. 94% of fresh/live Surf Clams are collected in Hokkaido, Aomori, Fukushima and Miyagi Prefectures.
About 4,000 tonnes are imported frozen from Canada.
They are popular dried, in soups or cooked with vegeatbles and rice.

UBAGAI-2

Their “tongues” can be appreciated as sashimi, but are most popular lightly poached and cooled down.

UBAGAI-3

That is the way they are usually processed before being served as sushi nigiri, either straight, or with a few small incisions for better effect!