Discover Oishii Tasting Event: Wakame salad

April 21, 2009 in Japanese, product, review

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

(Amazing Wakame Salad)

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Time has really gotten away from me these past weeks so this post is just too long in the coming!
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Back on March 16th I visited the International Boston Seafood Show (3rd year in a row!) and was fortunate to be able to attend an evening of meeting the fantastic people representing the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and eating simply delicious samples of Japanese food. I got to meet Sues from “We are not Martha” again (met her at the BlogHer event in Burington, MA) and got to share part of the evening with her. You can read her account of the event at her post “Japan Pavilion Tasting Event ” at “We are not Martha“.

This is an event that the ministry is vigorously promoting – Oishii Japan. I was given a few delightful minutes to chat with, via interpreter, the Deputy Director of the International Trade and Tariff Team in the International Affairs department of the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Mr. Masashi Itoh.

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

He was very kind to give us the time he did and he was very patient with our many questions about their efforts, Japanese food, and cultural things like the proper way of handing one another their business card.

The take home message that I really appreciated was that Japanese food is about more than just sushi (it really is!) and that the Japanese government is interested in promoting the exquisite quality and breadth of variety that typifies their food and cuisine.

I would give hen’s teeth to be a food blogger in Japan, exploring the ancient as well as new cuisines that Japan has evolved.

There was a great variety of samples provided that included salmon, hamachi yellowfin tuna from Dainishi company, wasabi avocado by Kinjirushi, delicate crab, unagi, salmon roe by the Nomura Trading Company, and a resplendent wakame salad from The Marine Foods Corporation.

Here are a couple shots of the crab dish. A fellow photographer who was competing with me all night to shoot things decided she needed a shot of me eating this crab morsel. Somewhere out there in the Japanese web-o-sphere is a cheesy image of me scarfing this down. Hope I never run across it!

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Here are a couple of shots of the wakame salad that I could NOT get enough of. It has this plump crispiness when you bit into it, the flavors (sesame, wakame, other more mysterious aspects) explode in your mouth. It was fantastically refreshing.

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

They shared delightful unagi.

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

We had this composite fish ball sort of food that is really quite delicious. This is something that is common in asian cuisine but we do not tend to find it here as part of the Japanese restaurant food cuisine.

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Hamachi teriaki (yellowfin tuna)

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Sashimi yellowfin

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Salmon roe

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

It was a delicious (did I say that before?) and entertaining evening. I look forward to possibly attending again next year!

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

Japanese Ministry Oishii Tasting 2009

As with any event relating to Japanese customs, they provided us with gifts, including this cute shrimp sushi pen!

Oishii gift - shrimp sushi pen

Oishii gift - shrimp sushi pen