Fish roe is a delicious culinary option with a rich global history.
Roe is the term used for fish eggs, and the eggs of all fish but the sturgeon are marketed either as roe, or with the fish species name, plus the word caviar. While true caviar only comes from the sturgeon, roe can come from a wide range of fish species, from trout to lumpfish, and many others in between.
Roe has been consumed for thousands of years, perhaps tens of thousands. It offers delectable flavours, unique textures, and can be eaten alone, used to top blinis, with sushi, and in any number of other ways. If you’re not familiar with the delights offered by fish roe, we’ll discuss all you might want to know below.
While some types of roe can sometimes be marketed with the word “caviar”, it is only true caviar if it comes from a species of sturgeon (beluga, baerii, oscietra, etc.). While both caviar and roe are fish eggs, only the sturgeon produces caviar. Why consider other types of roe, then? There are numerous reasons to include this delightful food in your menu planning.
One of the more common reasons for choosing roe over caviar is related to environmental protection. Many species of sturgeon are endangered, and wild harvesting of eggs has been banned in most areas of the world. While fish farming provides a sustainable method of supplying the growing global demand for caviar, some discerning diners prefer to eat roe instead to further reduce pressure on sturgeon species.
Another reason for choosing roe is cultural – fish eggs are used in culinary traditions all around the world. The use in sushi is only one example. You’ll find numerous others out there. The Greeks have taramosalata. In Chile, it’s called erizo de mar. In South Africa, it’s eaten in a sour curry, and in Peru, it’s called huevera frita. From Asia to Africa to Europe and the Americas, fish roe is embraced in traditional cuisines.
Of course, there is also the nutritional aspect of roe consumption. Like fish oil, the eggs themselves are positively bursting with good nutrition. They are very high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are antioxidants and also anti-inflammatory agents. Roe is also high in vitamin D, vitamin B12, magnesium and iron.
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Actually, the eggs of most fish and even some crustaceans are edible. However, that doesn’t really mean that they taste great. Some of the most common species for roe harvesting include the following:
Others of note include sea urchins, and even lobsters, although these are more difficult to find on the market.
At Kingdom Fine Foods, we source only the freshest roe from humanely farmed fish around the world. The flavours of our roe vary from honey to umami and everything in between. In addition, roe is often flavoured with other ingredients depending on the desired taste or intended dish. Some of the most common flavouring options include ginger, wasabi, smoke (roe smoked over wood), squid ink and more. Salt is common in most but not all roes, as well.
When you buy fish roe online here at Kingdom Fine Foods you only get the best of best.
Consuming roe is a personal experience, and can be done in any way that you prefer. However, there are traditional options available for those who prefer not to experiment much.
Roe is used extensively with many types of sushi. For instance, masago (capelin roe) is used in any number of dishes, from California rolls to more traditional fare. It is also used in sashimi, and even in salads.
Blinis are small pancakes and are usually topped with roe, often salmon, but other eggs are also used.
Pasta has long been topped with roe for additional flavour and unique textures. Spanish cuisine is a prime example of this, where harus (herring roe) is used for its smoky flavour and lemony tang.
As mentioned, salads can be topped with roe to add umami flavour, or to bring additional texture to the dish. This is common around the world, and found prominently in cuisines from both Asia and Europe.
Think that roe might not make a delightful topping for a dessert? Think again. It’s often used to bring a bit of savour to sweet dishes. For instance, Spanish cuisine combines smoked herring roe with mousse.
Like caviar, roe can be served as a topping for breads and crackers. Trout roe is often served on sourdough, with butter and yogurt, and sometimes topped with pepper and green onions or shallots.
While there are many different types of fish roe on the market, some are more frequently consumed than others. In this section, we’ll discuss the right types of roe for you, as well as explore some of the options you can buy online here at Kingdom Fine Foods.
Harus is a traditional herring roe. While it is eaten around the world, it is most notable in Spanish cuisine. Harrus is smoked, and then sprinkled with lemon juice for a little more acidity. Generally, harrus is dark grey to dark brown in colour, although it can appear black.
Salmon roe is consumed around the world, but originates in Alaska. These are large eggs, and they are usually a honeyed orange in colour. Salmon roe is very rich in flavour, and it evokes thoughts of honey. It can be used in dishes ranging from blinis to sushi and everything in between.
Tobikko is the name given to flying fish roe. In its natural state, it is a red-orange in colour, but different flavouring additions can change the colour dramatically. For instance, black tobikko is coloured and flavoured with squid ink. Gold tobikko is coloured and flavoured with ginger. Green tobikko, like green masago, is flavoured with wasabi. Other options include orange tobikko and red tobikko.
A lovely honey gold in colour, trout roe is one of the sweeter types on the market, offering a delightful crunchy texture and delicate flavour.
These are just a few of the options you’ll discover, all of which can be delectable additions to your event or gathering, or enjoyed with your family or alone.
At Kingdom Fine Foods, we source only the finest, freshest roe from leading farmers and harvesters around the world. We take great care to ensure that our partners use sustainable practices and ensure environmental protection to safeguard the animals with which we share the planet. Our goal is to ensure that you have access to the highest quality, gourmet roe, and that includes options ranging from herring to salmon, trout and everything in between.
Whether you’re interested in the smoky deliciousness of harus, or you want to explore the world of sushi with authentic masago or tobikko, we invite you to experience our extensive selection of roes. We also invite you to contact us to learn more, or if you simply have a question about our products.
Buy fish roe online today and have it delivered at your door within 24 hours.