Hokkigai (Surf clam)
Rich and smoky flavor of grilled hokkigai
“Hokkigai” (surf clam) is a marine bivalve in the family Mactridae. It has long been eaten in Hokkaido or Tohoku area but it was not until the 1990’s when the technology developed to transport fresh marine products to become one of the common ingredients for Edomae sushi.
“I have to be careful when I buy hokkigai because they live in sandy areas and often contain sand. Today I chose the best of the best, about 500 grams each including the shells. Thick meat and sweet flavor.”
Upon making nigiri, hokkigai is grilled after brushing on sweet soy sauce. Unlike other chefs, Mr. Takaoka does not cut off the liver.
“The liver is often taken off to avoid the smell but it is better left on when very fresh. The liver has rich savor and becomes even more tastier when grilled, perfect to enjoy with sake.”