Thursday, February 3, 2011

Wind In The Lodgepoles

Gosh, what a let down. Saturday night and 10 inches of snow, then Sunday night featured Full Stick, Fast Hero Snow...we rocked the mountain...I finished my week all amped-up going into my weekend. Headed home, I knew I wouldn't be having the kind of peak experiences I'd enjoyed over the past two nights...sigh...

Undaunted, I took a good nap and woke up eager to wield my brand new Sashimi Knife on some beautiful Fresh Albacore Tuna I picked up at the Reno COSTCO. Two inches thick, and alive with the telltale opalescence of fresh mouth is watering just remembering!

I washed the sushi rice, cooked it, sweetened it with Seasoned Rice Vinegar, and cooled it. While the fan was cooling my sushi rice, I unboxed the new tool, and marveled at the effortless, precise cuts it made in the firm albacore. Wetting my hands, I rolled up a half a dozen nigiri-sized rice logs, and arranged them on a rustic glazed sushi plate. I dabbed a fingertip of wasabi on each new slice of fish, and placed them atop the rice.

I did this twice, the fish was remarkably fresh considering the source...almost four hours driving time from the nearest ocean...still the Jet Age, I guess...I can close my eyes even now, and almost feel that fish melting in my mouth...

I broke with tradition as far as my beverage alright, but not my traditional Sapporo Lager...I supped Chico-Style, with a Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale...their signature India Pale Ale. Wow! Hops and Wasabi...a marriage...definitely...Made in Heaven.

The Knife
I've wanted a "real" sashimi knife for years...Oh, I could never afford the real damascus-style knife, where the knife maker hand forges the steel, and folds the knife blank onto itself dozens of times just as the Samurai Swords were made in antiquity...those knives go for several hundred dollars an inch, and are so amazing, I'm not sure I'd ever get one dirty...the are just plain amazing to gaze upon...sort of a Time Travel Talisman, that transports one to the Feudal Japanese Past.

Sashimi knives are long and slender, sort of like a western slicer or carving knife. Unique to the application, the sashimi knife is hollow ground, but only sharpened on one side...this is the knife's secret...the flat, un-sharpened side slides through the fish almost without drag. Without the hollow grind on one side, the knife can't make a low pressure area there, hence no's like an airplane's wing in theory, only upside down. The hollow ground side makes the low pressure compared to the side without the edge, and that slight low pressure lifts the un-sharpened side of the blade a micron or two off the fish, reducing the drag...genius!

That's my theory, and I'm sticking to it!

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