One of the foods that gaijin don’t eat is, of course, natto, which as any visitor or resident to these shores will tell you is one of the stock food questions to foreigners, “Can you eat natto?”, along with “Can you eat Japanese raw fish?” and “Can you eat anko?” I myself love anko, but natto… Interestingly enough, natto is mostly a Tokyo or Northern Japan delicacy; many (I think the majority, if I could find a survey!) of people from the Kansai area turn their noses up at it, including, thankfully, my wife, although she finds many other unpalatable items to make up for it! I’ve tried it once in a cooked dish and managed to get through about a third of it before giving up.

So, goo Ranking took a wee look at what people put on top of their natto. goo Ranking offer now a service to cut and paste their original survey into your blog, so I’ll add that for those who want to see the original results. I’ll also add an English translation, of course! As usual for goo Rankings, 100 points is awarded for the top vote-getter, and the rest awarded a percentage representing how many votes they got relative to the winner. “Nothing” was perhaps not one of the answers allowed.

If the following table completely destroys your browser, sorry…


Q: What do you put on top of natto?

Rank Topping Score
1 Spring onions/green onions/scallions 100
2 Egg (usually raw?) 65.8
3 Okura 33.3
4 Oba/shiso/perilla/beefsteak plant 26.6
5 Grated radish 25.7
6 Yam (山芋, yama imo, mountain potato) 22.9
7 Bonito (かつお, katsuo) flakes 22.7
8 Kimuchi 22.6
9 Seaweed 18.0
10 Shredded dried plum (梅肉, bainiku) 18.0

The table continues with items such as squid, mini sardines, complete dried plums, tuna, other types of seaweed, tofu, mayonnaise and all the way down to garlic.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.