Shop and Live Mediterranean

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

$6,000 and One Hour... What do you say?

Essential Japanese Caviar Cuisine

I had the exceptional opportunity to visit several cities in the island country of Japan in 1977, at the age of thirteen. At that time, I had very little experience with foreign cuisines of any kind, and still had yet to settle out of my overall juvenile 'pickiness'. After getting over the initital sense of feeling so, so... but oh so far away from home, I began to discover a kind, pleasant and respectful society of people, with a fascination with the surrreal. I watched in awe an entire section of Tokyo inhibited by young people donning authenic American clothing of the 1950s, from our tourbus. In another area, people went about their daily activities dressed as their favorite cartoon character. In terms of fashion, I readily discovered that Japanese women spare no expense. Indeed, I'm still waiting for some of those so eloquently expressed designs that coexist with such calm tranquility among the classic kimono and wooden sandal, to arrive upon our shores.

On a more somber note, my adventure in experiencing traditional Japanese cuisine was rather limited. I can vividly recall several instances where I refused several dishes based on what I perceived as a 'fishy' taste. However, I would attribute the stronger deterent against participation in Japanese meals to the extremely short amount of cooking time spent in food preparation. I distinctly point to a trip to a Benihana-type restaurant where the female chef devoted no more than a few seconds on any number of cold raw items from potatoes to chicken thighs on our table top grill. I owe the discovery of a 'Shakeys' Pizza Parlor to my survival of the trip. Years travel later, however, I appreciate the experience more than I can say.

This brings me to our discussion experience with caviar today. I have chosen to show excerpts of a classic episode of 'Iron Chef - Caviar Battle' to demonstrate the manner in which chefs from the country of arguably the most consistent consumption of 'essential', ie., pure, raw, etc., food on the planet, manipulate this most glorious delicacy. More to chew on. If only...

And as always, I welcome your feedback,
best times,

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