Delights Of The Sea
Delights Of The Sea: Sashimi
Sashimi translates to “raw fish”, and who would have ever have thought this Japanese word would become a part of the English lexicon.
Let’s think about it: Who in their right mind would think, “Why not – let’s eat fish raw”, said no one from the western world, ever.
However, once you discover the delightful and subtle flavours of the “umi no sachi [delights of the sea]” there is no turning back.
Sometimes things just take a little getting used to, like the texture.
A particularly delightful aspect of sashimi, is its seasonality.
For example, in the autumn the saury pike are mature and have layers of fat on them, absolutely delicious with the soy sauce and freshly grated ginger. I also recommend saury pike done in shioyaki (baked in salt), with a squeeze of kabosu (What is “kabosu”?)
Around the end of October, one of my all time favourites, bonito (katsuo) will be returning to this area after feeding in the northern seas off Hokkaido over the spring and summer. These fish have also fattened up and are amazing when seasoned with freshly grates garlic (I suggest Aomori garlic) and soy sauce.
At the beginning, I never thought of eating abalone liver. I was amazed at just how delicious the liver of not only abalone is, but fish liver in general being extremely delicious. I actually love abalone liver so much I make a video of preparing abalone livers (How to prepare abalone)
Not everything is love at first sight: The first time I tried sea urchin, it was not so good. I am not sure if the sea urchin was not fresh or what, but I was certainly not a fan at the beginning. However, after I went to a sushi bar and was served sea urchin again, only this time it was incredible, as it was fresh out of the water and still shimmering, absolutely delightful (What is sea urchin?)
Not only is sashimi the most delicious way to eat fish, it is offered nestled in a stunning visual displays of the chefs artistic creativity.
If I had to choose one Japanese cuisine for that I consider the best, I have to nominate sashimi to be the most exquisite delicacy in the entire Japanese food culture.