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Karashi Mentaiko (辛子明太子)

Mentaiko (明太子) is marinated pollock roe and a popular ingredient in Japanese cuisine. It is salty and filled with umami deliciousness.

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Common ways of consuming mentaiko include pairing it with sake (Japanese rice wine), steamed rice, as onigiri filling, as a pasta sauce or as a topping in various savoury dishes.

Mentaiko (明太子) - non coloured

Mentaiko is chilli-flavoured, hence it is also commonly referred to as “karashi mentaiko” (辛子明太子). They come in coloured (first picture; adds an aesthetic touch to dishes) and non-coloured (pictured above) variations, so be sure to buy the right type according to your preference.

Karashi Mentaiko (辛子明太子)
To get the roe, simply make a slit on the sac and scrap out the roe with a spoon (pictured above). Discard the membrane.

Mentaiko Pasta Recipe

Easy Mentaiko Pasta. Click photo for the recipe.

In Singapore, you can purchase this ingredient at local Japanese supermarkets (such as Sakuraya, Meidi Ya, Isetan Scotts and selected Cold Storage sushi counter). I bought mine from Isetan Scotts. They should be refrigerated or frozen according to the duration of storage required.

Get all recipes tagged with this ingredient.

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