Hitting us hard is the sea urchin roe craze. We dove deep into Singapore to find the city's must-try 'uni' dishes
18 June 2014 4:09 PM
| Updated 17 Feb 2016
By Celine Asril, Priyanka Chand Agarwal, Joyce Huang
Image 1 of 13 | Image credits: Lolla
Brave is the man who first laid eyes on a spiny and hazardous sea urchin and thought, "I’m going to eat that." And probably really hungry as well. Nevertheless, we have him to thank for the plump and briny lobes of orange roe that now grace our dinner tables. Uni - as it is called in Japanese - is traditionally eaten raw in Japan. While in Mediterranean cuisine, the creamy and rich urchin is used to flavour omelettes, soups and sauces. If, like us, you can’t get enough of this luscious ingredient, here are eleven reasons to indulge.
Image 2 of 13 | Image credits: Keyaki, Pan Pacific Singapore
BOOK THESE TABLES HERE | KEYAKI, CHIKUYOTEI and CHIKUSEN | Fresh uni in a box | Uni in its natural, briny form is, in our opinion, one of the best ways it can be enjoyed. For city slickers, the next alternative to slicing freshly picked sea urchins open and slurping up its bright orange gonads, is to order one of these: at Pan Pacific’s Japanese restaurant, Keyaki, their uni is imported from Hokkaido and it is characterissed by its bright gold colour and firm but creamy texture. You can get a small order of approximately two slivers ($18) straight up; Chikuyotei serves a small bowl for $98, when it is in season in Japan (mid-June, likely); while Chikusen serves theirs at $28 an individual portion.
Celine Asril is guilty of taking pictures before tucking in to all her meals; it’s a (good) hazard of the job – this editor of HungryGoWhere never sits down to two of the same meals in a week.
Priyanka has worked in PR and marketing for start-ups of all sizes before trading in the corporate ladder for writing about food and fashion. When not battling with HTML, she can be found furiously stirring a pot of curry in her tiny kitchen, shopping online or looking for the next ‘hot new restaurant’. She also runs a fashion label that makes the occasional appearance at trunk shows. Priyanka would like to have her own blog/website someday but every time she clicks opens a browser, something is on sale at an online store somewhere.
To prepare for Singapore's inaugural coffee festival (9-12 June 2016), we caffeinated our way through 10 third wave coffee revolution cafes that roast their own beans, and got the lowdown from the folks who brew up the jittery java