Thursday, March 09, 2006

Canned fish = YUM

As I get ready to post about dinner the other night, a realization strikes. I love canned fish. Yes, it's true. The name of this very blog pays tribute to a dish made with one of my all-time, favorite foods- canned tuna. I also like to make patties from canned salmon- sooo good. If you scroll down you will hear (or read) me singing the praises of sardines (yet another canned fishy) on toast. Speaking of sardines, check out this food blog. And today, right now, I'm about to tell you all about the BEST part of my dinner the other night. And yes, it's also fish in a can.

What is this succulent sea creature I speak of? Saba Ajisuke. That means mackeral with flavor, literally. And what flavor it is. It's a couple of nice chunks of mackeral steak, bones and all, seasoned with sweet soy sauce and tucked into a can. All you do is open, heat up a bit if you like, and eat. I'm telling you- saba ajisuke + bowl of hot rice = HEAVEN. The bones are all soft and completely edible, the fish has soaked up the seasonings like a sponge.....I know it's the Japanese in me when I say I could eat an entire pot of rice if I had a couple of cans of this to eat it with. After you eat the fish, you MUST pour the remaining seasoning onto your bowl of rice and eat eat eat! It's hard to describe why it's so good, but maybe it's similar to crusty bread dipped in chowder- it's a perfect marriage of two flavors coming together that make both foods even better than on it's own!

It's funny, I feel like an oyaji (old man) since this type of food seems like oyaji food. I always imagine older Japanese men eating the saba right out of the can and drinking beer, maybe smoking a Mild Seven Light. I think saba ajistuke is usually eaten as otsumami (snacks that go well with alcohol) but please, eat it with rice. You'll thank me!

Now for the rest of dinner:
Rice and miso soup with abura age (fried tofu skin), wakame (seaweed) and daikon

Gobo (burdock root) and konnyaku kimpira

Cheese mini sasa kamaboko (fish cakes with bits of cheese)

Hotokuzuke (Japanese pickles)



Mike said...

Wow, who would have thought canned fish could look so good! Awesome..

carlyn said...

I loved your entry on the saba. If I didn't know better, I would have thought I had written it..... My favorite quick food. Unfortunately, where I live, saba in a can is not easy to find. I have to travel quite a distance to find it. Thus, a treat it is when I do get to enjoy... The entire meal looks fantastic!!!!! I'm going to try konnyaku in my kimpira! Sounds wonderful