Octopus “butsu-giri” in miso-vinegar sauce 鮹のぶつ切りのからし酢みそ和え

japanese cake

This is an assortment of “Chinmi” 珍味 items. Dried shishamo シシャモ and smoked scallop were sent to us from my mother, same as last year. I slightly grilled the shishamo. I also served a smoked scallop from lake Saroma サロマ湖 in Hokkaido.

The “drunken” grape tomatoes (smaller than cherry tomato) were leftovers. I made them based on a recipe called “Bloody Mary” on a stick by Frugal gourmet. The original recipe calls for soaking the tomatoes in Vodka but I did not have any. So instead, I soaked the tomatoes in gin with dry vermouth making them “martini” on a stick. Here is the recipe; I skinned the grape tomatoes (by blanching). Then put them in a container of “martini” and left them to enjoy themselves in the fridge for several days. I served them with a small mound of kosher salt on the side and toothpicks to dip them into the salt. The end product has a nice gin flavor and the tomato is sweet. It is a very nice dish. We particularly like the burst of flavor when we bite down on them. Of course, one of us has to drink up the marinade when we finish all the tomatoes (hardship!).

Finally, octopus with miso-vinegar dressing. I just used an end piece of boiled octopus leg. “Butsu-giri” ぶつ切り means simply “cut into chunks”. By cutting this way, it has a different texture than when it is thinly sliced. I just used my usual “Karashi sumiso” からし酢みそ made of saikyo miso 西京味噌(2 tbs), Japanese hot mustard (1/2 tsp from a tube), rice vinegar (1 tbs). I added mirin to adjust the thickness and sweetness of the sauce.

All items are intended to go with sake and they were indeed good pairing for sake. Martini and sake in the same offering–what’s not to like?

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