Smeralda Whole Bottarga Grey Mullet Roe Pack of 2

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$89.00 5.3 oz - Pack of 2

Smeralda Whole Bottarga Grey Mullet Roe

Bottarga is a delicacy of salted, cured fish roe, typically of the grey mullet or the bluefin tuna (Bottarga di Tonno). Produced around the Mediterranean is where the best-known version of Bottarga is and it has many names and prepared in various ways.

A word about that pellicle: It is, in fact, the membrane that encapsulates the roe sac, which turns papery during the process of curing and drying. While it is not necessary to remove it, it is preferable. As Andrew Feinberg notes in Franny's: Simple, Seasonal, Italian, if you don't peel it off, "it might get caught in your teeth." Generally speaking, I peel only as much as I want to use, much like certain salami with indelibly chewy casings.


The first documented Bottarga production in the Nile Delta is during the 10th century BCE. And, in the 15th century, Martino da Como described the production of bottarga by salting, then smoking to dry it. In Italy, it is made from bluefin tuna in Sicily, and from flathead mullet in Sardinia, where it is called Sardinian butàriga.

Bottarga is usually sliced thinly or grated when served. Sometimes it is prepared from Atlantic bluefin tuna (Bottarga di tonno Rosso) or yellowfin tuna. It is massaged by hand to eliminate air pockets, then dried and cured in sea salt for a few weeks. The result is a hard, dry slab. Formerly, it was generally coated in beeswax to preserve it, as it still is in Greece and Egypt. The curing time may vary depending on the producer and the desired texture as well as the preference of the consumers, which varies by country.

Its culinary properties may be compared to those of dry anchovies, although it is much more expensive. Often, it is served with olive oil or lemon juice as an appetizer accompanied by bread or crostini. It is also used in pasta dishes.

Recommended Serving Suggestions

Bottarga usually is served sliced thinly or grated when it is served. Bottarga is best to eat raw or used to top cooked preparations, almost like garnishes of flakey sea salt. Intensely flavored, a little bottarga goes a long way, so it's best grated on a Microplane or thinly sliced using a mandoline. If it's too soft to grate, try freezing. A single piece of bottarga, when grated, is usually enough for four servings so if there's any leftover, wrap it well and refrigerate or freeze it and it will keep for months. You can also grate bottarga over scrambled eggs, add it to risotto, slow-cooked cannellini beans, or sprinkled over a Caesar salad.


Store Bottarga either vacuum-packed or sealed in beeswax. As long as it hasn't been opened, it's best if used within 15 months but will still be fine for two or three years. Bottarga is sensitive to ultraviolet light, so it is best stored in a dry and dark place.

Aside from the way it tastes, the best part of bottarga is that it effectively keeps indefinitely. Even after you open up the packaging, peel back the pellicle, and grate some over pasta, the remainder will keep, tightly wrapped in plastic and refrigerated, for months and months.

Sample Recipe: Bottarga Pasta Italiana



  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

  • 1 cup coarsely ground breadcrumbs (from a baguette ground in a food processor)

  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 1 pound bucatini or perciatelli pasta

  • 6 cloves garlic, roasted

  • 4 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced

  • 2 tablespoons grated bottarga, plus more ungrated for garnish (about 3 ounces total)

  • 3 tablespoons very coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Step 1

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of oil and the butter in a skillet over medium heat until butter foams. Add breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Step 2

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon salt and the pasta, and cook until al dente.

Step 3

  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Squeeze pulp from skins of roasted garlic into skillet, and add sliced garlic. Cook 2 minutes. 

Step 3

  • Using tongs, transfer the pasta directly from boiling water to skillet. Toss to coat. Add 2 tablespoons grated bottarga, the parsley, and half the breadcrumbs, and toss. Transfer to a platter. Season with salt.

Step 4

  • Sprinkle pasta with remaining breadcrumbs. Grate a generous amount of bottarga on top. Serve.

Smeralda Bottarga di Muggine or Cured Grey Mullet Roe in English is one of the greatest Sardinian products of the Italian culinary tradition. Bottargas are salted and pressed fish roe kept for three to four months in a dark and ventilated room until settled and ready for use.

Bottarga has high protein content and is very rich in Omega3 fatty acids; it is amber in color and has a decided yet delicate flavor.

Suggestion: Stylish and versatile, cut into wafer-thin slices it is an excellent match with fresh vegetables as an ingredient in delicious salads. A joy to the palate on crispy-hot croutons with a trace of butter, or sprinkled and grated over pasta dishes.

5.3 ounce (150 gram) Each - 2 Units Total - **Cutting Board NOT Included**

Ingredients: Mullet roe, salt - no coloring agent or preservatives

Packaging: Vacuumed-sealed Plastic

Product of Italy

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