There are thousands of languages in today’s world so it follows there are thousands of ways to say “Good-bye”. And within this smorgasbord of languages and dialects there are different ways of saying and interpreting “Good-Bye” within each language, depending on familiarity with the person and the situation.
After lunching with a dear friend in Paris, for example, you may finish the meal with “A Bientot,” pecking a “kiss-kiss” on each of their cheeks. “A Bientot” would be interpreted to mean, “Goodbye … see you later.”
But after having lunch with that dear friend, you may return home to discover your partner in a scandalous liaison with another dear friend. (We’re in Paris, remember?) As you are tossing your ex-partner’s clothing from the window of your 5th Arrondissement pied-a-terre, you may be shouting “Adieu” (or worse), which is translated to “Good-bye … forever.”
Many of my friends are feeling quite celebratory biding “Adieu” to 2009, as well. Therefore, I need an appropriate appetizer to fit the occasion. Inspired by the wasabi caviar I’ve seen refrigerated near the seafood departments at Hiller’s and Whole Foods, I’m making a Japanese-styled appetizer to bring to a couple of parties this evening.
These are sushi-loving folks but serving tuna and yellowtail sashimi to a crowd is not in the proposed budget for 2010. This appetizer, however, does borrow some of the flavors appreciated with sushi, and caviar is often a fixture on sushi menus.
In Ann Arbor, caviar options are boundless at this time of the year. Most grocers in town carry the shelf-stable Romanoff which is fine for many recipes. If you want the really good stuff, Monahan’s Seafood in Kerrytown offers a wide and interesting array of fresh caviar to accommodate your palate and purse.
“After the collapse of the Soviet empire, wild sturgeon was over-fished and Beluga (caviar) was banned from import. We sell a comparable California White Sturgeon, which is milder than a beluga with a smaller roe, selling for $64.00 an ounce,” owner Mike Monahan said. “This would be fantastic savored with a fine champagne, toast points and creme fraiche,” he added.
For this Edamame Cup recipe, Monahan recommends their Japanese Ikura (salmon roe) for $60.00 a pound, similar in price to the wasabi caviar I purchased. The large, shiny orange roe would be a deliciously beautiful complement to the Edamame Cups. Next time!
Edamame are Japanese soybeans and available in the frozen vegetable section of most groceries in town. Edamame are low-fat, nutrition-rich powerhouses which I will need to help jump start the New Year. Wasabi, often referred to as Japanese horseradish, is a fiery hot condiment and commonly mixed with soy sauce to savor with sushi.
Short on time? Just make the edamame spread and place in a dish edging the rim with caviar and garnishing the top with toasted sesame seeds. I enjoy serving edamame spread with Kame rice crackers. Note that the recipe easily doubles to utilize a one pound bag of edamame, making two cups of spread. A good chilled sake would be the perfect accompaniment to this appetizer.
Pick your favorite language and honor me by joining in a global farewell to 2009. Here are a few options to get the chant started: Adios, Ciao, Namaste, Zan Jian, Auf Wiedersehen, Do Widzenia, Shalom, or my personal favorite…Ta-Ta!