Sometimes just because you are who you are, or even you are where you came from, means that you land yourself in some fantastic lucky opportunities. A lot of the experiences and adventures I have here are because of the generosity and kindness of others, of the people of Aomori. I don’t just stumble across the food and the company, I am invited as an honoured guest. I appreciate the people here so much that I find myself always looking to return the favours, but all they want is a smile and a little English chat. A chance to be in the company of someone from a far away land. Foreigners have a mystical and magical element to them, we are rare, unusual and intriguing to their curious minds. It would be like me going for dinner with someone from Mars (sorry I can’t help myself …another slight exaggeration!)
On Saturday I went to a sushi tavern in the heart of Aomori city with two friends, Tomoki and Masaki. We enjoyed some of the freshest fish in all of Japan, all of it had been caught off the coast of Aomori and displayed along the counter top of this cute little tavern. We sat at the bar with a great view of the head sushi chef working his magic.
Guess what popped up again? The dreaded Shirako….can’t even say the word without the shudder…and I happened to be sitting directly in front of a massive mound of it. Just a reminder Shirako is milt or soft roe which also refers to the male genitalia of fish when they contain sperm. In Japanese cuisine, the milt (白子 shirako ‘white children’) of cod (tara), anglerfish (anko) and pufferfish (fugu) are a delicacy.