Seafood dishes can come across as bizarre if you are not very familiar with the cuisine. Around 80% of the world’s seas are unexplored, and the explored parts have shown us some very alien-like species. So, it is likely that many people are skeptical of the various, and frankly, weird-looking seafood dishes. If you are not an avid eater of seafood, then you may find the different textures of oysters, octopuses, sea urchins, eels, etc. difficult to eat.
Many countries across Asia eat seafood daily as opposed to chicken and beef alternatives. So, naturally, it is from most Asian countries that the most unique seafood dishes come from. China, Japan, Korea, Siri Lanka, amongst others have a variety of seafood dishes as their main cuisine. Many other countries such as Sweden, Greece, Spain, and others, support wonderful marine life and so, also offer a variety of unique seafood dishes.
However, Asian countries hold the title for having the largest seafood palate amongst all others. So, let’s learn about some of the most unique seafood dishes from all across Asia with Ido Fishman, an eminent personality in the culinary world.
Asia’s Most Unique Seafood Dishes
Japan is known for serving some of the most unique dishes where the seafood is among the most sought after cuisines. Tuna eyeballs are among the unique dishes that are considered to be a luxury food in Japan. As the name suggests, restaurants serve carved out tuna eyeballs. With an egg and mussel-like texture, this dish is known to hold many nutritious qualities.
The tuna eyeballs contain a mixture of textures and flavors that you can experience with every bite. With the first bite, you will experience a crunchy texture and later an extremely rich umami flavor will coat your taste buds. Ido Fishman suggests that the best way to eat tuna eyeballs is to let them sit in your mouth for as long as possible. This will allow the different flavors of the eyeball to melt onto your taste buds.
Fish eyeballs are also very popular in other countries such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, etc., and are eaten on a daily basis. The eyeballs are taken from every edible fish available in the country.
These worms are collected from the muddy sea beds left behind after a high tide. They are pale pink skin color and have a very suspicious appearance. They look like something you will likely not even consider eating if you found them while stranded on an island. However, you will find fresh batches of spoon worms in every seafood market in South Korea. This is a widely popular dish in South Korea and is called Gaebul.
The Gaebul is known for its many nutritious properties and is eaten in many different forms. It is served as Sashimi (raw) and cooked in spices. However, the most common form of consumption of this seafood is when it’s alive and cut up into bite-sized pieces.
Most of you will know the pufferfish as the cute fish that blows up when it’s startled. However, this harmless looking fish is extremely poisonous and that is why Ido Fuhrman regards it as one of the most unique seafood dishes in Asia. The pufferfish dish is called Fugu in Japan and needs extreme care while preparing. Japanese chefs need special licenses to prepare this dish because of its toxic content. To make it even more interesting, a bit of poison is left in the fish to add to the tangy texture of this dish. It is one of the most expensive seafood dishes in the world.
The Korean and Chinese blowfish dishes are made from the non-poisonous species of the blowfish so they are available at reasonable prices. So, if you are looking for food that will fill you with nutritious supplements while also giving you the thrilling feel of eating poison, then you should definitely try the Japanese pufferfish.
Some of you may not find eating octopus as bizarre as the other discussed seafood. However, you may reconsider when you find out that it is actually eaten alive. Yes, that is correct. Live octopus, known as Sannakji, is one of the most popular seafood dishes in Korea. It is a common dish that you will find at almost every roadside diner or reputable restaurant.
When you’ve ordered a serving of Sannakji, be prepared to deal with cut up pieces of flailing octopus arms in your plates. The suckers of the octopus latch on to the insides of your mouth till you chew them dead before swallowing. The cruelty of the preparation process of this dish may be questioned by some, but since eating seafood that is alive is a common practice in these countries, it is not an issue. Another variety of this dish is of baby octopuses which are boiled alive and season with a sauce before serving.
Seafood All the Day: Raw, Cooked, or Alive!
Seafood is a big part of Asian cuisine so you will find a huge variety of different seafood dishes. This includes eating them in various states of raw, cooked, and even alive. One form of raw food that you should be familiar with is sushi. However, it doesn’t end there. An extremely wide variety of sashimi, raw seafood, is a major part of the seafood cuisine in Asia. This includes everything from fish to crabs to critters, plants, etc. You will also find many varieties of eating live seafood. So, if you’re feeling adventurous, try the life sashimi platters.
Seafood delicacies are not everyone’s cup of tea. You will discover a number of unique seafood dishes across Asia. Fishing is the main source of livelihood for many people living in Asia. So, naturally, they have many a lot of discoveries in edible seafood.
You will find critters such as shrimps, sea cucumbers, sea urchins, etc., poisonous species like the monkfish, jellyfish, pufferfish, etc. in the seafood palate. Snakelike eels, giant whales, sharks, squids, crabs, the possibilities are endless. So, which one of these mentioned kinds of seafood are you brave enough to try?
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