How to make Salmon Roe to Caviar Recipe – learn about the steps involved in getting the fish eggs to go from roe to caviar. The process is easy and simple, but you do need to have a little “know-how” and I am here to tell you all you need to know.
Before we get into how to make the Caviar from Salmon Roe let’s get some verbiage clear.
What are salmon fish eggs or fish roe?
They both refer to the same thing, it is the yellow round jewel-like fish egg or contents of the sack (skein) inside some female fish’s bellies. If the fish was not to be caught, the fish eggs would later become baby fish. The sack that holds the roe is called a skein.
What is Caviar?
Caviar refers to the cured fish eggs of a sturgeon. All other cured roe must have a specification of which fish it came from before the word caviar. In this way, caviar made from salmon roe or salmon eggs will be called salmon caviar, not just caviar. The true sturgeon caviar is black in color, a lot smaller than salmon caviar and can cost hundreds of dollars per ounce.
Why is sturgeon Caviar so expensive?
The high cost of sturgeon caviar does not come so much from the exceptional flavor, which is not to say that it doesn’t taste good, but more so because of the scarcity of mature sturgeon fish.
Sturgeon female fish must be at least 10 years old before they’re ready to migrate upstream to lay their eggs. Most of them have been fished out by that age, which is exactly why the mature sturgeon are rare and their roe is extremely expensive.
How much Salmon Caviar comes from 1 lb of Salmon Roe?
From every pound of salmon roe, you will get about 1/2 pound of salted or cured caviar.
Where can I buy salmon roe?
Since the skeins with the roe are found inside the salmon, if you were to buy fresh salmon straight from the fisherman or even a grocery store, oftentimes when you clean the fish you will find the skein with roe inside.
Here in the Pacific NorthWest, you can also search for locations (google “salmon sales locations”) where the Native Americans fish and sell salmon and buy it straight from them.
Sometimes they will have already cleaned fish with the salmon roe sold separately, sometimes you will just have to buy the whole fish and hope that it has fish eggs inside.
Tips for Success –
Try to avoid using metal utensils when making caviar. Wooden spoons and glass bowls are the best since they do not oxidize the salmon roe.
If at all possible, use filtered water to clean and process the salmon roe. Fish eggs take on extra water very easily by the process of osmosis, so using chemical ladened tap water can have a negative impact on the delicate taste of salmon caviar.