Among the most precious sea product: salted and dried roe

The sunny days at the seaside are coming and with them the desire to serve delicious fish-based dishes is growing: this is the perfect time for a training on bottarga!
Let’s start from a needed clarification: when we talk about bottarga we mean a production technique adopt to preserve a natural raw material.
It was born in the lands of Israel and Egypt and over the centuries it has reached the central Mediterranean basin: today the major bottarga producers are located in Greece, Spain and Italy, more precisely in Sardinia and Sicily. caviar-from-mediterranean
Bottarga is mainly obtain from mullet or tuna (both Bluefin or Yellowfin). The ovarian sac is eviscerated, washed, pressed and dried: the sum of all the steps takes about 25-30 days.Historically, these fishes were chosen for a matter of convenience: their ovarian sacs have a shape and a size suitable for the working process. The ovarian sacs of other fishes are not big enough to justify such processing: the resulting bottarga would be too small. Today the market prefers the mullet bottarga. Its quality can be recognized by the amber colour, uniform or with slight nuances, and the presence of the caudal fin. The latter does not make real qualitative changes but it keeps the two ovarian sacs together. The texture of the product depends on the size of the single piece instead.

During the training we tasted three different types of bottarga in purity, cut not too thin, to be able to perceive the main differences: an unusual way of tasting it. Even if it is mainly used grated, it has great potential cut with a knife and “marinated” with extra virgin olive oil.

Mullet Bottarga by Pino Spanu, the smallest in size of the three tasted, is amber in colour, compact, resulting in an excellent yield when grated. Very delicate, with a balanced sapidity and light hints of artichoke leaves, typical of the organoleptic profile of bottarga.

By tasting the Mullet Bottarga Oro Cabras we fund a strong personality due to a pretty high acidity. Overall, however, it is delicate with a salty and almond aroma.

We ended with the Mullet Bottarga from Cabras by Pino Spanu: the finest one, 100% Sardinian, both the production and the raw material.
It is softer to the touch, with a different yield even when grated. It has an intense colour, a wide and round aromatic part, with slight hint of acidity on the finish: a very elegant product, with a persistent and intense flavour.caviar-from-mediterranean

Francesca Marini
 Sales Manager