Sea urchin in Sanriku is in season now.
Minami-sanriku San San Shopping Street in Minami-sanrikucho in Miyagi Prefecture has an original menu with plenty of sea urchin, and I went there to taste that on July 22.
“Minami-sanriku Kira Kira don (sparkling bowl)” cooked with local sea food was launched in 2009, and four variations including sea urchin bowl and salmon roe bowl were added according to the season. It had a hit with sales of 45,000 bowls per year. After the earthquake, salmon roe bowl was back in February as the first step of recovery. Now, they serve sea urchin bowl until mid-August.
I paid 1,800 yen to try “Kira Kira Uni don” at Matsubara Shokudo. A lot of sea urchin covering the rice in a bowl melted in the mouth, leaving a rich and sweet flavor. It’s perfect!
It was served with sliced raw octopus, which was soft and delicious!
Minami-sanriku San San Shopping Street was quite crowed on that Sunday with not only local shoppers but also tourists coming by coach.
A variety of souvenir items are available including original T-shirts for recovery, quiche with octopus called “tako pudding”, fried fish cake with octopus, and tasty nori seaweed.
On weekends, various entertainments are performed on a specially built stage.
“Fukko Ichi (Recovery & Happiness Market)” offering special products collected from all over Japan is held on the last Sunday of every month, and the event is even more bustling.
Minami-sanriku Kira Kira Shopping Street
59-1 Sizugawa aza Gozenshita, Minami-sanrikucho, Miyagi-ken
■Public transportation: Bus from Sendai to Kesennuma via Minami-sanriku
■Free parking lots up to 50 cars are available.