Of course, you would think of Sushi and Sashimi. It's only natural since sushi has become such an important cuisine all over the world. But raw fish isn't the only 生 Nama (fresh, or raw) food Japan has to offer. Allow me to introduce you to 4 other raw foods that you have to try when you're in Japan!
Probably like you, I was always told that raw eggs could make you sick, so you should cook them first. Besides, what kid wants to consume something that is so slimy and goopy anyway??? Well, imagine my surprise when one morning my Japanese grandmother gives me a bowl of rice and an egg still in its shell for breakfast. After much hubbub from me and explanation from her, I learned that a fresh raw egg, beaten and mixed with a little soy sauce and poured over hot rice was a popular breakfast food in Japan. I also learned that Nama-tamago, or raw egg, was an extremely common and popular addition to other dishes (check out the raw egg with Yoshinoya beef bowl below).
The best way to enjoy raw egg is with sukiyaki. The pot will cook all of the other foods (meat, tofu, veggies, etc.). You take the egg, beat in with your chopsticks in a little serving bowl, and then dip your hot foods straight from the pot to the egg to your mouth. It's actually pretty clever, since the cold egg cools the boiling hot food that you're about to eat while adding some tasty flavor.
Horse meat is almost never eaten cooked in Japan; rather, the basashi, as it is called, is eaten raw with a soy-based sauce (the flavor of the sauce varies depending on region and season).
So there you have it...
...4 raw foods that Japan has to offer. If you are feeling like stepping out of your comfort zone a bit, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised at these unique offerings, so I say zehi, give it a shot along your journeys in Japan!