In Japanese cuisine, there are many dishes from fish, but this fish eating stream is probably one of the most explored habits of the Japanese. Living in a land with 4 seasons of spring – summer – autumn – winter, markedly changing, the Japanese soon formed a close relationship with nature as well as the seasons. The profound sense of this season has influenced the culinary culture, depending on the natural conditions of each season and each month, there are typical dishes. This mid-summer to early autumn period is an ideal time for an interesting Japanese culinary tradition – fishing and grilling Ayu stream fish.
What is Ayu fish?
In addition to possessing a vast territorial sea with a rich and diverse source of marine fish, Japanese cuisine also has the advantage of having a dense system of rivers and streams, with extremely delicious freshwater fish. One of the most striking freshwater fish species is Ayu. Ayu belongs to the group of stream fish, living in upstream streams in the deep forest. With that condition, Ayu’s water source always avoids pollution, keeps the purity and creates a natural delicious taste for fish meat.
The clear streams where Ayu “lives”
Ayu fish begin to appear massively around late June, and then in September, they begin to breed. If you eat Ayu fish around this time, in addition to the stocky and aromatic fish meat layer, you are also “promotion” of countless aromatic fleshy aromatic fleshy eggs inside.
Unique Ayu fishing techniques
In order to catch Ayu, one cannot use the usual fishing technique but must have its own technique, this technique is called Tomozuri. The uniqueness and ingenuity of Tomozuri has made Ayu fishing from ordinary fishing activities a favorite hobby of many Japanese people.
View of Ayu fishing
Instead of using the usual bait, Tomozuri uses … a live Ayu fish as bait! Based on the aggressive and respectful characteristic of the fish, the fisherman will attach the hook to the bait Ayu fish, with a long hook attached to the hook. When bait fish Ayu swim into the territory of any Ayu herd, the individuals in the herd will immediately rush to attack Ayu bait. It is at that time, these belligerent Ayu will be “trapped”, fastened to the iron hook at the end of the hook.
The taste of the purity of Ayu stream fish
Ayu is one of the most expensive and popular freshwater fishes in Japan. However, the way to prepare this fish dish is extremely simple, mainly just grilled salt. The best part is when you set foot in the pure and desolate region of the Japanese mountains, spend an interesting fishing session by the stream, then immediately skewered sticks, grilled the fresh fish. It was on the pink fire from the roadside wood. The pure, sweet and unadulterated taste of Ayu fish meat combined with a little salty salt, and the aroma of stick wood has created a unique “wild battle” dinner.
Ayu fish are full of eggs in the breeding season
However, in the hustle and bustle of industrial life in Japan, not everyone has the conditions to make a true fishing trip. Ayu quickly entered the restaurants and restaurants, and kept the crispy grill and refined salt. Regardless of the type of processing, Ayu always keeps the crispy golden crust combined with the characteristic sweet taste of fish meat, attracting customers from sight to taste.
Ayu stream fish in restaurants and bars
In our memories, there will always be the image of adventurers who have lost their way into the forest to flexibly pick wild fruits and catch stream fish for food supplies. Coming to the upstream area in Japan, you absolutely can experience that interesting feeling when participating in fishing activities as well as processing “in battle” type of Ayu fish. Enjoying Ayu is not only wonderful in the pure taste of the dish, but also in the entire cultural and entertainment activities that take place around that unique dish.