Would you like to try this Yakutian raw fish delicacy?Yakut Cuisine Center "Mahtal".
Indigirka salad was voted “worst dish in the world” this year, according to the audiences at Taste Atlas - an online travel guide for traditional food, local ingredients and restaurants.
One of our readers, Alan, also named it among the dishes he would never try: "Fish should be cooked. It's not really food, and certainly not a salad, if you just hack lumps off from frozen blocks of fish and then smother it in salt and oil".
What is Indigirka salad all about? The salad is made from chopped frozen fish with onions, sunflower oil, salt and pepper. It is supposedly based on local gastronomic traditions, brought back by Yakutian chef Innokenty Tarbakhov. Indigirka is named after the Yakutian river in the Sakha Republic in Russia’s Far East.
The key ingredient in the salad is freshly frozen fish. A very low temperature, no less than -40C, is required - otherwise, the fish comes out watery. There should not be any ice flakes in the fish: that shows that it was frozen alive.
Indigirka salad is typically made from local whitefish such as broad whitefish (also known as chir), nelma, and muksun, and it is traditionally served in ice bowls. The salad is served with fish roe or berries, such as cloudberries.
All this means that it's almost impossible to taste a properly made Indigirka salad anywhere besides the really cold regions of Russia. When tourists find themselves in Yakutia, they take the opportunity to give it a try, along with other local delicacies stroganina and sugudai (also made from fresh frozen fish or meat).
"I'm Russian and never heard of that salad to be honest, but when I googled it I saw that it falls in the same category as tartar, ceviche, sashimi, etc.", said one of the commentators on Taste Atlas’s post.
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