New Year’s Eve Nibbles

To go with drinks: Hokkaido ikura, and home-cured gravlax salmon.  The cream cheese is eked out with a little sour cream to make it easier to spread, and the salmon ones have some fresh finely chopped dill leaves mixed in too.  Gravlax is one of the easiest charcuterie to cure at home, so long as you can get hold of good quality salmon.  As any expat here in Tokyo will attest not many stores stock fresh herbs apart from parsley, basil and occasionally coriander, so to make this gravlax the hardest ingredient to obtain is the dill!  I buy mine from the supermarket chain Ozeki or the department store in Ueno called Yoshi-ike.  The latter has the best selection of fresh herbs I have seen in Tokyo yet, including other charcuterie essentials like tarragon, thyme, chervil and rosemary, at reasonable prices.

2 responses to “New Year’s Eve Nibbles

  1. Funny you should mention the paucity of herbs. I found a speciality store… somewhere near Tokyo… perhaps it was Yoshi-ike. In the hazy recesses of my memory, I seem to recall that they stocked everything from imported beer to dried herbs. In any event, twice yearly trips were a life saver for some items. The table setting, by the way, looks beautiful. Those must be chum eggs?

  2. The upmarket places that cater to expats like the late National Azabu and Nissin usually have a good selection but are expensive. Both Nissin and Yoshi-ike have excellent imported beer and wine on offer too.
    Thanks, that dish is one of the few of my collection of bizen-yaki that survived the March 11th earthquake, and it is one of my favourites. Sorry I can’t tell you the species of the ikura’s mother, it just said “Hokkaido ikura” on the box…I can’t make ikura myself like you can (very jealous), so I buy it from the store!

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