Fish sausages, once almost a staple of the Japanese diet, fell into decline around the ’70s. But the outbreak of mad cow disease in 2001 has seen the reemergence of the fish sausage, albeit with a variety of mad flavors that bring out the wurst in some food makers.
Standard, artificial fish meat sausages of a pale pink color and wrapped in see-through orange were long an institution throughout Japan.
But production and sales peaked some three decades and, by 1999, Japan was only making 60,000 tons of fish sausage — around one-third of the heyday of the sea-sourced snag.
And the most notable part of the fishy feasts is the freaky flavors that they have spawned, like strawberry milk, which is made out of marine life, but tweaked to taste like a sweet lactose drink.
"It’s the kind of taste that makes your face screw up, but it’s pretty good to chew on," model Sayumi Yano tells Weekly Playboy as she wraps her lips around a strawberry milk-flavored fish sausage and chomps into it.
Among the other recent additions to fish meat sausage flavors to go on the market in Japan are:
TUNA GRITS — simply sausages made out of minced raw tuna;
CHILLI PEPPER — not only are these fish bangers packed with mouth-burning chilli peppers, 15 percent of the meat is pork;
COD OVUM the name hardly suggests a tasty treat, but actually these sausages are made of a delicacy better known by its Japanese name of mentaiko;
PORK — not a taste unknown to sausages, except, like in this case, where the eater pigs out on mince inside that is made out of fish;
SARDINE — not just the flavor, but the full creature that is added into the sausage; and,
FRUIT and VEGETABLE a really healthy fish banger with additional flavors including three fruits and 15 vegetables, like carrots and eggplant.