This is the time of year, especially here in New England, where the shad run. Shad is one of the few fish sought out not for itself, but for its roe, and are they ever spectacular. Once a year I indulge. When you see them at the fishmonger’s, they should be a spectacular orange-red color. Usually you find them as two intact lobes, with a little connective tissue between the lobes. With cooking, the lobes become brown.
1 lobe of shad row
1 slice of white onion, chopped
olive oil (or other preference)
black pepper, cracked
Heat up the oil to medium in the skillet, add the onion and the shad roe. Try to keep the sac enclosing the shad eggs from rupturing, but if it cannot be helped, have a splatterguard screen handy in case of need — the eggs will sometimes pop.
Saute the row and the onions. Stir the onions around and flip the roe. Cook for about 5-6 minutes, moving the onion to cooler regions of the skillet if needed.
Add the egg. I used one from our Farmer’s Market. Allow to cook until the white is white, not translucent. Add spices to the egg. Obviously you can also flip the egg if you prefer. Continue to flip the shad roe.
This is exceedingly rich: I ended up eating only half the shad roe lobe, reserving the other half for a taste treat later on. The interior texture of the roe should be very creamy; you don’t want to overcook.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Another option (not done this time): Remove eggs from sac, break them up and beat them into three eggs with a tablespoon of water or milk and a pinch of ground pepper, heat up your oil in a skillet, and make an omelette. Don’t over cook. Goat cheese could also be nice option added to this.