What’s on top of your natto


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?

1Spring onions/green onions/scallions100
2Egg (usually raw?)65.8
4Oba/shiso/perilla/beefsteak plant26.6
5Grated radish25.7
6Yam (山芋, yama imo, mountain potato)22.9
7Bonito (かつお, katsuo) flakes22.7
10Shredded 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.

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