Nothing new here but we again got 1lb blue fin tuna block from Catalina. This block appears to have come from a larger fish than what we usually get. This time, I served sashimi from akami 赤身, toroトロ and karashi sumiso からし酢味噌 dressed “fat” and also as nigiri sushi 握り寿司.
I first removed the skin. Under the otoro portion, you can see the thin but white fat layer. This layer is usually very firm and I do not want to leave it on the otoro piece. I try to keep this fat layer on the skin when removing it and then go back to the skin and shave off the layer of fat. I divided the tuna immediately into blocks of “chiai”, akami, and toro. I further divided the toro block into chutoto 中トロ and otoro 大トロ blocks. The portions I do not serve immediately, I wrap in kitchen parchment paper, place in a Ziploc bag and then put it in the meat drawer of the refrigerator. I usually marinade chiai and use it later for different dishes.
We also got spot prawn (ama-ebi 甘エビor more similar to botan ebi 牡丹エビ). Some were still alive (albeit barely) when we received them. I quickly iced them down (picture below). These prawn are very perishable. The best I can do is to ice them down while preparing. I remove the head and trim the antennae and proboscis. I set the small heads aside for deep frying by putting them in a sealable container with ice cubes. I put them in the meat drawer of the refrigerator (The ice will not melt completely for a few days in the meat drawer). The larger heads (and other shells), I immediately put in a pot with water to cook into a broth for miso soup, For the body, I remove the shell and devein it. I do this for only for the amount I’m going to serve. I place the rest with shell still on in a sealable container with ice cubes. With this treatment, these prawn will last for 2-3 days.
The picture below is actually the second evening serving after we received the fish. Instead of regular daikon garnish, I mixed daikon garnish with thinly sliced picked myouga 冥加 and dressed it in sweet vinegar. I seared the Otoro with a kitchen torch or “aburi” 炙り. I cut the Amaebi in half lengthwise and then sliced it obliquely (this was a rather large prawn).
I cut the pure fat layer of the tuna into small cubes and dressed with karashi sumiso and finely chopped scallion.
For a change, I attempted to make nigiri sushi as an ending dish. For sushi rice, I used koshihikaru コシヒカリ imported from Niigata prefecture. I used smaller prawns for sushi. Others are akami and chutoro. Wasabi was just thawed “real” wasabi.
For my rare attempts at making nigiri, it was OK.
The sashimi was excellent. We really enjoyed this sushi and sashimi dinner.